by Jon Miller
This article was originally published on Marketplace.org.
The U.N. estimates that more than 10 percent — some 870 million people — of the world’s population is chronically malnourished. Yet the number of overweight people is even higher — about 1.4 billion. Over the last 30 years, the global obesity rate has doubled.
To find out why, I traveled to the island of Crete, in southern Greece. I’ve been reporting around the world for more than 20 years, and I have to admit — I’ve had tougher assignments.
I really like Greek food. The fresh vegetables, the olive oil, the herbs, the yogurt, the wine. And lucky me — since the 1950s, study after study has shown that the Mediterranean diet, and especially the diet of Crete, makes you live longer, protects you from heart disease and cancer, and keeps you from getting too fat. Look at lists of the world’s healthiest diets, and the one from Crete often ranks at the top.
Unfortunately, hardly anybody follows it anymore.