Processed Food Addiction: Foundations, Assessment, and Recovery is NOT a beach read. That is unless you have insomnia on vacation. Joan Ifland, Marianne Marcus, and Harry Pruess have delivered a serious tome on the dangers of processed food. It is not a pretty sight. I waded through 31 chapters and 454 pages in my quest to understand the subject. It is a technical book written … Continue reading Processed food addiction—what the Science says
There is still time to update your summer book list. I recommend Hooked: Food, Free Will, and How the Food Giants Exploit Our Addictions by Michael Moss. It is an easy read, well written and flows from one thought to another. To some of us equating the dangers of Oreos and crack cocaine seems ridiculous. To Moss it is self-evident. The book … Continue reading Hooked: Are Oreos as addictive as crack cocaine?
Several interesting threads appeared on the web in recent weeks. Do post-pandemic trends reveal a major shift in consumer behavior? Ultra-processed foods are still a red-hot topic. A bill introduced in Congress could have dramatic consequences on the food supply. Consumers are weighing in on which foods are healthy and which ones are not. Sustainability is still relevant. Hunger is an issue that won’t go … Continue reading Post-pandemic trends, defining healthy, obesity, sustainability, and feeding the hungry
Two journal articles appeared on my laptop in the past few weeks. Science moves us forward. It is not a clean process. It is not always clear. In an age that calls out for certainty, we look to science to save us. Science is an uncertain enterprise. It is like a jigsaw puzzle with many pieces. Some of these pieces fit into a useful pattern. … Continue reading Which is worse? Ultra-processing or high-fructose corn syrup?
Two molecules are in the news. No, it is not because they advance our sex lives or help us live longer. It is because recent studies suggest that they are dangerous. These renegades are tert-butylhydroquinone (TBHQ) and titanium dioxide (TiO2). Why are these two additives suspect? Are the fears overblown? Why are they added in the first place? How will they affect my personal eating … Continue reading Renegade Molecules of the Week: TBHQ and Titanium Dioxide
Mark Bittman detests Big Ag. Robert Paarlberg defends it. Neither writer stops there. When it comes to Big Food the two authors are in agreement. They contend that Big Food is the problem with the American food system. Let’s focus on their reasoning on specific aspects of the issue. Obesity is a major problem in rich nations and a growing problem around the world. In … Continue reading The problem with Big Food
Big Ag! What is it good for? Absolutely Nothing! suggests Mark Bittman. Robert Paarlberg comes to Big Ag’s defense. Bittman gives his assessment on Big Ag and Big Food in Animal, Vegetable, Junk. Paarlberg counters him in Resetting the Table. Rachel Laudan suggested these two books for us. They provide insight into threats and promises of modern agriculture and food technology. The downside of Big … Continue reading Dueling visions of Big Ag
Obesity has America in its grip. It is spreading around the world. The United States of America inserts its presence into global culture. Its movies, marketing, and images travel across the seas. Love it or hate it, American culture penetrates even remote locations. The world population gets heavier. Last week we blamed processed food for the growing obesity crisis. The week before we chose not … Continue reading Blaming American culture for the rise in obesity around the world
Last week I explored why we blame the fat person for being fat. I concluded that we need to be sensitive to the feelings of fat people. We should not shame them. They deserve the same respect as anyone else. This week we blame the food—processed food. I shift to the more technical term obesity when addressing processed food. Processed food is making America obese, … Continue reading Blaming processed foods for obesity
News of the coronavirus pandemic overshadows earlier concerns about our expanding waistlines. Becoming old and becoming fat increases our chances for dying from COVID-19. In What We Don’t Talk About When We Talk About Fat, Aubrey Gordon tells us to back off. Some fat people accept their fatness. They don’t want our condemnation, our advice, or even our concern. Unless asked for help, we should … Continue reading Blaming the person for being fat—What are the health risks?