Promoting Healthy Diets through Nutrition Education and Changes in the Food Environment

Corinna Hawkes, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO)
30 Nov, 2013

An unhealthy diet is one of the key risk factors for non-communicable diseases (NCDs). For example, inadequate consumption of fruit and vegetables increases the risk for cardiovascular diseases and several cancers; high salt consumption is an important determinant of high blood pressure and cardiovascular risk and increases the risk of stomach cancer; high consumption of saturated fats and trans-fatty acids is linked to heart disease; a range of dietary factors have been linked with diabetes; red and processed meat consumption is linked with some cancers. 

The objective of this paper is to provide an overview of: (a) nutrition education actions, in their broadest sense, that international organisations, governments, the private sector and civil society have been developing and implementing around the world to influence consumer awareness, attitudes, and skills around healthy eating; and (b) the evidence of the effects of these actions.