Personalized food: A healthy solution for the scarcity and waste of food.
"While 870 million people go hungry, the world wastes 1300 million tons of food each year, published in September 2013 by the United Nations Organization for Food and Agriculture" (FAO). That same year the world population was 5.9 billion people. If we divide the amount of food waste wasted in 2013 among the total world population that year; we obtain that for each person approximately 220kg of food is wasted per year. The population currently (2018) is 7500 million. According to the supposed data this year, approximately 1,650 million tons of food will be wasted. The third part of the waste is due to the final consumer "Consumers fail to plan their purchases, buy in excess, or overreact to expiration dates and preferential consumption of products", detailed a manual with recommendations to reduce waste WHO (http : //www.fao.org/news/story/en/item/196450/icode/)
The WHO details that "The exact composition of a healthy, balanced and varied diet depends on the needs of each person (for example, their age, sex, lifestyle, physical exercise), the cultural context, locally available foods and eating habits ". If we go deeper into this phrase and get different concepts that are implicit; We can say the following: A healthy diet has to be personalized; for example, an adult compared to another with similar physical characteristics have different energetic wear, different nutritional needs, deficit or excess of some vitamin, metabolism, genetic predisposition to certain diseases, life habits, geographical location in which it is, preferences for some food or diet, among others. If we make both adults consume the same food, it will have a different effect on each one; possibly one of them causes digestive problems or that this is slower, that you feel tired after consuming it or simply do not like it; and to the other person, just the opposite. From the above, new questions are opened; What we eat is what our body really needs? How to choose what foods should I consume? Do I know my body and its needs? among other questions.
Under what was previously analyzed; we can say that we waste food because we do not know what food we need or should consume; in the hypothetical case that a person knows their nutritional needs, the foods available locally, have good eating habits and healthy; Then this person would buy the food they really need and consume the right amounts at the right time. In this case, the person not only would not buy unnecessary food that would be wasted; but also, it would have many benefits for your health as for example: it would be in good physical condition according to its biotype, its organism would work correctly, a good immunological system, ideal mental and emotional state; since all this is directly related to food and good healthy habits. But the reality is different and the vast majority of us do not feed ourselves according to our nutritional needs and we have unhealthy habits; WHO says "Eating a healthy diet throughout life helps prevent malnutrition in all its forms, as well as different noncommunicable diseases and different conditions. However, increased production of processed foods, rapid urbanization and changes in lifestyles have led to a change in eating habits. Now consume more hypercaloric foods, more saturated fats, more trans-type fats, more free sugars and more salt or sodium; In addition, there are many people who do not eat enough fruits, vegetables and dietary fiber, such as whole grains. "Nutrition education is very important because in this way people will know how to choose their food to have a healthy life and avoid waste.
For the food industry, currently, it involves a high cost to make personalized, healthy products that do not involve many processes or that include unhealthy compounds that have health consequences. The existing products do not provide us with the necessary information to be able to select what we need and must consume; normally when we choose a food we do it for several reasons: according to our experience, the influence of the media, tastes and preferences, among other reasons; since we are born and as the years go by, our relationship with food depends on constant experimentation of our palate with new flavors, textures, smells, etc. However, the main reason to choose our food should be personalized according to our needs, preferences, tastes, etc. and in this way have a healthy life without excesses or needs; therefore, food should not be standardized, nor should diets and each person should have the freedom to choose. For the food industry, it is a challenge to satisfy the needs of their consumers and they are obliged to integrate new technologies, food and food education in order to reduce food waste in all processes that involve their development from sowing to the final consumer , and see the reuse of these to be able to contribute to our environment, the environment.
It will be possible in the near future for people to know how to eat and choose what, how much and when to eat; and that in some way that percentage of food that is wasted each year can satisfy the nutritional needs of that other percentage of people who do not have to eat that same year. It will be possible that in the near future the Food Industries can provide us with food that can really adapt to each person and produce the quantity that is really required so as not to waste more food during the harvest, production and distribution. It will be possible that in the near future we will become food conscious in order to make this happen.