Increasing Pulse Consumption to Improve Human Health and Food Security and to Mitigate Climate Change

  • Beatriz Oliveira
  • Ana Pinto de MouraEmail author
  • Luís Miguel Cunha
Part of the Climate Change Management book series (CCM)


Human food security requires both the production of sufficient quantities of high-quality protein and dietary change. This is particularly relevant given the present concurrence of rising human population, climate change and changing consumption habits. Pulses are recognized as being readily available sources of protein, complex carbohydrates, fibres, vitamins and minerals. Additionally, pulses, as well as other legumes, have the exceptional capacity of significantly increasing soil fertility, yields of companion or subsequent crops, biodiversity, environmental protection and climate change mitigation. Despite this, the use of pulses for food purposes is low in Western Europe, where pulses are mainly used for feed. This chapter reviews some of the environmental, nutritional and health benefits of pulses, and presents the main results of a campaign developed in a food service setting as an example of ways to increase the amount of pulse consumption. Results show a high acceptability of pulse consumption, whenever food services present alternatives to meat protein based on pulse protein.


Food service Environment benefits Health benefits Pulses Sustainability 



Authors thank José B. Cunha from Oporto British School for revising English usages and grammar throughout the manuscript.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Beatriz Oliveira
    • 1
  • Ana Pinto de Moura
    • 2
    Email author
  • Luís Miguel Cunha
    • 3
  1. 1.Eurest Portugal, Compass Group PLC, GreenUPorto, Faculty of Sciences, Faculty of Food Sciences and NutritionUniversity of PortoPortoPortugal
  2. 2.GreenUPorto & LAQV/REQUIMTE, DCeTOpen University of PortugalPortoPortugal
  3. 3.GreenUPorto & LAQV/REQUIMTE, DGAOT, Faculty of SciencesUniversity of PortoVila do CondePortugal

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