DELICIOUS: TACKLING OBESITY DURING CHILDHOOD AND ADOLESCENCE THROUGH MEDITERRANEAN DIET, EDUCATION, PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND SUSTAINABLE GASTRONOMY
Half of the adult population in EU (51.8%) was grouped as overweight in 2017, being about 14.9% of adults classified as obese. Urbanization, the fast pace of life, and a westernalized diet, rich in ultra-processed food and poor in fresh fruit, are among the drivers of the consumption of lower quality food: deficient in micronutrients and unbalanced macronutrient content.
These unbeneficial behaviours lead to malnutrition and overpressure on food systems, that are in contrast to Mediterranean Diet and lifestyle. Sociocultural, technological, geopolitical, and educational factors play an important role in the Mediterranean Diet adherence, which is the main scope of DELICIOUS.Malnutrition leads to 4 million deaths globally and costs society up to USD 3.5 trillion per year. The malnutrition double burden is expressed by:
- Raising overweight and obesity rates leading to increasing rates of noncommunicable (chronic) diseases (also called NCDs) like type II diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and some cancers, that cause 4 million deaths globally;
- Increasing rates of food poverty pointing that 1 out of 9 people in the world is undernourished, with a special focus on the hidden hunger (lack of micronutrients intake).