Diet for a Hot Planet: The Climate Crisis at the End of Your Fork and What You Can Do About It

Beyond what we already know about “food miles” and eating locally, the global food system is a major contributor to climate change, producing as much as one-third of greenhouse gas emissions. How we farm, what we eat, and how our food gets to the table all have an impact. In this book by Real Food Media founder and co-director Anna Lappé, she predicts that unless we radically shift the trends of what food we’re eating and how we’re producing it, food system-related greenhouse gas emissions will go up and up and up. She exposes the interests that will resist the change, and the spin food companies will generate to avoid system-wide reform. And she offers a vision of a future in which our food system is part of the solution, with six principles for a climate friendly diet as well as visits to farmers who are demonstrating the potential of sustainable farming.

Published nearly ten years ago, Diet for a Hot Planet remains a timely and incisive read for anyone looking to understand how food can be a powerful tool for solving the global climate crisis. 

Praise for Diet for a Hot Planet

“As Anna Lappé reveals in this important book, we must be conscious of what we eat – not only for our own health, but for the health of the planet. When it comes to climate change, junk food may prove even more destructive than S.U.V.s. Lappé’s message is timely and empowering. Instead of waiting for politicians to do the right thing, we can make simple changes to our diet, enjoy it, and help change the world.”

—Eric Schlosser, author of Fast Food Nation 

“Nothing is more important than connecting the way we eat to global warming. After all, food is an everyday need for everyone. Anna Lappé shows us that eating with intention is our responsibility and our pleasure.”

—Alice Waters, founder and proprietor of Chez Panisse and author of The Art of Simple Food

“Anna Lappé’s Diet for a Hot Planet does for the present generation what her mother’s Diet for a Small Planet did for the last: empower us to think in a new way about how food affects our own health as well as that of the planet. Her inspiring book makes it clear that food choices matter to climate change and that each of us, voting with our forks, can make a real difference in ensuring a more sustainable food system. I want all my students to read this powerful book.”

—Marion Nestle, Professor of Nutrition, Food Studies, and Public Health at New York University

“In this tour-de-force, Anna Lappé provides readable, lively, and much-needed answers to a question that all too few of us understand: how does our food affect the planet? By guiding us with a sure hand through the fog of claims and counterclaims around climate change and agriculture, she inoculates us from the corporate lies that stand between us and a just, sustainable, and delicious food system.”

—Raj Patel, author of The Value of Nothing and Stuffed and Starved

About the Author

Anna Lappé is a national bestselling author, a renowned advocate for sustainability and justice along the food chain, and an advisor to funders investing in food system transformation. A James Beard Leadership Awardee, Anna is the co-author or author of three books on food, farming, and sustainability and the contributing author to thirteen others. Anna’s work has been translated internationally and featured in The Washington Post, The New York Times, The International Herald Tribune, and Oprah Magazine, among many other outlets. One of TIME magazine’s “eco” Who’s-Who, Anna is the founder or co-founder of three national organizations and currently co-directs Real Food Media. Anna also works closely with philanthropic leaders and created the Food & Democracy grantmaking initiative of a family foundation in California. Anna’s research on food and farming systems has taken her to more than 25 countries and 100 U.S. cities and her TEDx talks have been screened more than 1 million times. Anna regularly speaks to audiences around the world, from food-focused fundraisers at Sotheby’s to lecture halls at universities and global food conferences with leading advocates and entrepreneurs. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and their two daughters.

Header photo by Maarten van den Heuvel on Unsplash