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In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto
In Defense of Food An Eater's Manifesto
Author: Michael Pollan
What to eat, what not to eat, and how to think about health: a manifesto for our times. — Food. There's plenty of it around, and we all love to eat it. So why should anyone need to defend it? — Because in the so-called Western diet, food has been replaced by nutrients, and common sense by confusion - most of what we're consuming today is no longer...  more »
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ISBN-13: 9780143114963
ISBN-10: 0143114964
Publication Date: 4/28/2009
Pages: 244
  • Currently 4.1/5 Stars.

4.1 stars, based on 176 ratings
Publisher: Penguin (Non-Classics)
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Audio CD
Members Wishing: 1
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto on
Helpful Score: 6
An excellent book that tells what is going on that none of the media wants to touch.
noisechick avatar reviewed In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto on + 95 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 5
Pollan's got some sound advice in this book. He tries to keep it simple.

But this is not a 'diet" book, It's more a thorough investigation of where the Western world (specifically America) went wrong in our relationship with food, ceding all control of our dinner table to 'experts' and no longer seeing "food" as an idea and cultural experience... but only as fuel... and through the misguided lens of "nutrition."

The first half of the book examines and breaks down the series of cultural moves (politically and capitalistically) that since the 1970s have separated us from our close relationship with "food."
Basically, we no longer see an apple - we see vitamins, calories and nutrients.
We see fat, sugar and antioxidants.
What we eat is no longer in the hands of "Mom" and "Family Tradition" - it's in the hands of Nutrition scientists and the large food conglomerations.
Leigh avatar reviewed In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto on + 378 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
I devoured this book; it is amazing. It's full of all the "common sense" stuff you already know, deep down in your mind, yet don't really think about. It's terrifying and appalling and fascinating to read at the same time. At one point, I started to get panicky about what I could do IMMEDIATELY. Predictably, I feel duped and manipulated by the food industry. I've wanted to grow my own food for a while, but reading this solidified that idea in my head.

Pollan touches on many important issues and introduces ideas I hadn't thought about, including pesticides, food ingredients, and HOW we eat. I loved the discussion of the French Paradox near the end and find myself incorporating a lot of French eating customs into my own meals.

I've always eaten "healthy," with few processed foods, but this made me question the nutrition of the whole foods I purchase. It made me see "nutritionism" in an entirely new light, too. If you love food or even if you have a shaky relationship with it, read this. At the very least, you'll be enlightened on the subject of nutrition. You will naturally change your behavior with this knowledge in your head.
reviewed In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto on + 17 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 2
With his characteristic journalist's eye, Pollan takes on the food marketing industry in an attempt to prompt/shock his readers into selecting food more mindfully.

This book is his answer to the question posed in "The Omnivore's Dilemma": Given that our bodies can digest nearly anything, is there an optimum way to eat? Nutritionists give us one answer: all we need is the right balance of macro nutrients (protein, carbohydrates, and fats) plus our required vitamins and minerals. A can of Pepsi and a bag of Doritos is nutritionally identical to a banana and an ear of corn, plus a little bit of fat for frying.

Pollan argues that the data from the 40-year Nutritionism experiment is in and the results say the source matters -- perhaps even more than the macronutrients. His answer to the optimum diet question is "Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants."
raksha38 avatar reviewed In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto on + 203 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I enjoyed this book a lot. It put into words far better than I could many of the thoughts and feelings I've been having about "Nutritionism" (thinking of food in terms of being a composition of individual micronutrients instead of as, well, an actual whole food that's part of a larger food chain). He very clearly lays out the shortcomings of and damage done by this line of thinking and offers a more helpful alternative. It also plainly stated a lot of the problems and shortcomings of the kinds of research nutritional scientists either prefer or are forced by circumstances to use. Our food system and ways of eating in this country are so screwed up and it's going to take a lot more than individual effort to change that, but his advice to "Eat food. Mostly plants. Not too much" is a good place to start.
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reviewed In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto on + 3558 more book reviews
Because the so-called western diet food has been replaced by nutrients common sense by confusion. Most of work were consuming. Today is no longer the product of nature but a food science three result is flat Michael Pollan, Kohl's, the American paradox Sabor we worry about nutrition, less healthy, we seem to be with defense of food pollen proposes a new and very old answer to the question of what we should he comes down to seven simple, but liberating words eat food not too much mostly plants

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