Food is the most important source of happiness and health for every individual as well as for the planet earth. Human food requirements are a major factor in planetary health through agriculture, food preparation, preservation, distribution, and even food waste management. Individual, societal, and planetary health are intertwined into a braid that is the result of elements of the food ecosystem in human society. Each element of the human food system is deeply studied in disciplines like production (agriculture), distribution and aggregation, processing, marketing, access, preparation and consumption, gastronomy and health effects, waste recovery, and impact on the environment. All these disciplines are commonly studied in silos using their own language and terminology. We need to adopt a systems approach to study human food systems by considering each component and their role and effects quantitatively. The most important factor in the food system is the human food consumption and plays the most effective role in individual, societal, and planetary health. Interestingly, individual food consumption is strongly affected by (mis)information, culture, economy, and regulations in every society.
Ramesh Jain is an entrepreneur, researcher, and educator. His research interests actively addressed challenges in Cybernetic Systems, Computer Vision, Artificial Intelligence, Data Management, Multimedia Computing, and Digital Health. He is a Fellow of AAAS, ACM, IEEE, AAAI, IAPR, and SPIE. His dream is to radically transform health systems away from hospitals and into the hands and homes of individuals by developing a Personal Health Navigator using cybernetic principles building on the sensors, mobile, computer processing, artificial intelligence, computer vision, food computing, and
Medical and related technologies. He is the founding director of
the Institute for Future Health at UCI.