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In Defense Of Food

An Eater's Manifesto
Paperback Book
April, 2009
In stock now: 
$24.00 CAD
Banyen's Description: 

Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.

 These simple words go to the heart of Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food, the well-considered answers he provides to the questions posed in his earlier title The Omnivore’s Dilemma.

Humans used to know how to eat well, Pollan argues. But the balanced dietary lessons that were once passed down through generations have been confused, complicated, and distorted by food industry marketers, nutritional scientists, and journalists—all of whom have much to gain from our dietary confusion. As a result, we face today a complex culinary landscape (“nutritionism”) dense with bad advice and foods that are not “real.” These “edible foodlike substances” are often packaged with labels bearing health claims that are typically false or misleading. Indeed, real food is fast disappearing from the marketplace, to be replaced by “nutrients,” and plain old eating by an obsession with nutrition that is, paradoxically, ruining our health, not to mention our meals.

Writing In Defense of Food, and affirming the joy of eating, Pollan suggests that if we would pay more for better, well-grown food, but buy less of it, we’ll benefit ourselves, our communities, and the environment at large. Taking a clear-eyed look at what science does and does not know about the links between diet and health, he proposes a new way to think about the question of what to eat that is informed by ecology and tradition rather than by the prevailing nutrient-by-nutrient approach.

In looking toward traditional diets the world over, as well as the foods our families—and regions—historically enjoyed, we can recover a more balanced, reasonable, and pleasurable approach to food. Pollan’s bracing and eloquent manifesto—a pleasure to read—shows us how we might start making thoughtful food choices:

Eat food… don’t eat anything your great great grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food

Avoid food products bearing health claims… When the Kellogg’s strawberry-vanilla breakfast cereal bars can boast about being “heart healthy,” health claims have become hopelessly compromised…

Avoid food products containing ingredients that are a) unfamiliar, or b) unpronounceable, or c) more than five in number, or that include d) high fructose corn syrup…

Get out of the supermarket whenever possible.


Publisher’s Description: 

From the author of the bestselling "The Omnivore's Dilemma" comes this bracing and eloquent manifesto that shows readers how they might start making thoughtful food choices that can enrich their lives and enlarge their sense of what it means to be healthy. (Consumer Health)

The companion volume to The New York Times bestseller The Omnivore's Dilemma

Michael Pollan's lastbook , The Omnivore's Dilemma, launched a national conversation about the American way of eating; now In Defense of Food shows us how to change it, one meal at a time. Pollan proposes a new answer to the question of what we should eat that comes down to seven simple but liberating words: Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants. Pollan's bracing and eloquent manifesto shows us how we can start making thoughtful food choices that will enrich our lives, enlarge our sense of what it means to be healthy, and bring pleasure back to eating.

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