In most of the world, both food production and the practice of healthcare are geared toward maximizing products and services. We aim to feed as many mouths as possible and treat as many diseases as possible and have made huge strides in recent decades. Often, these goals result in lack of attention and resources given toward externalities—such as the environmental degradation and poor working conditions—in both fields. They may also result in a lack of focus on health outcomes of both food and healthcare provision.
The fields of lifestyle medicine and preventive medicine place increased emphasis on preventing diet-related disease and both the supply of providers in these fields and the demand from the public for such care is thankfully increasing. Simultaneously, we are experiencing some progress toward increasing food production in diversified systems that often follow organic practices and demand for such products. Current policies related to healthcare reimbursement, food production, and food safety have not fully caught up, however, and can often serve as an impediment to further progress. Advocacy from organizations and individuals are calling for progress in these areas and in many cases, helping to change these policies in the right direction.