The dietary change of Chinese residents is driven by increasing incomes and urbanization, which will bring about non-negligible changes in the food production of the land system. To explore how dietary changes might influence future land systems and the environment, this research hypothesizes two potential dietary change scenarios in the period 2010–2030, based on the current trends and Dietary Guidelines for Chinese Residents (DGCR), and applies the CLUMondo model to simulate the spatiotemporal patterns of land systems and estimates a lifecycle’s environmental impacts on dietary change. As shown in the results, dietary changes would obviously alter the land cover, agricultural intensity, and livestock density of land systems, and the changes in land use intensity are noteworthy. If the current trend of dietary change is unchecked, the intensification and expansion of agriculture and animal husbandry would be widely distributed in North China and Northwest China, where the intensity of cropland was low in the past and the ecosystem was relatively fragile. Moreover, the increasing demands for food lead to sharp increases in the carbon footprint, water footprint, and ecological footprint from food production. In contrast, the balanced diet recommended by DGCR could offer considerable environmental benefits. This diet is conducive to cutting down land use intensity, helping natural systems avoid intensification, and the expansion of agriculture and animal husbandry, which lower footprints from food production and have helped to implement the policy of returning croplands to grassland and forests in China. Therefore, popularizing balanced diets could be a win–win for human health and environmental sustainability.
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