A recent research by the Italian Nutritional Observatory Grana Padano highlights the fact that Italian diet is still neither sustainable nor eco-friendly. In this project, the food habits of 1200 individuals were analysed. Women (47,3%) and men (52,7%) aged between 18 and 90 years old were part of the sample.
Interviews revealed widespread "non sustainable" behaviours. For instance, 40% of interviewees declared they use canned fish several times per week. This food product requires a remarkable amount of energy both for its preparation and storage.
Even the consumption of "harmless" potatoes might have some environmental backlashes if they are fried. Furthermore, chips are to absolutely avoid not only for their high calories intake but also because their wrapping bag is usually not recyclable.
Also products having a high percentage of sugar are "enemies of the environment" since they require a lot of processing. On this subject, 50 % of the interviewees declared to use sugar (or sugar-based items, such as brioches) everyday. Conversely, wholemeal items, which are less processed and healthier, are not regularly consumed.
The use of olive oil and Grana Padano, instead, stands in favour of Italians' good habits. In fact, the traditional cheese is an excellent nutritional source, lactose-free. Nonetheless, Italians still need to become more familiar with fresh items (such as homemade juices and "smoothies") and to drink more tap water, reducing the amount of bottled water.
That said, one question arises: What are the tips to have a sustainable diet? Firstly, we should eat more lentils since they are very nourishing, as a source of fibre, along with being eco-friendly. Moreover, eggs are cheap and good proteins, one should eat once/twice a week averagely. We should consume dairy products but better if they are seasoned, eat fresh products within the right season, and eat onions and potatoes avoiding frying. Furthermore, we should prefer wholemeal carbs, avoid all the wastes and always remember to recycle whatever we can.