June 18, 2012
In the essay “Unhappy Meal” by Michael Pollan, he suggested that the food we eat today is not food at all. He then poses an extremely broad question, what is “food”? I would have to admit that until recently my idea of food was whatever taste good and could be bought for a considerably low price. However, now that my wife was recently diagnosed with celiac disease, I was obligated to learn about what is really considered food. Pollan goes on by claiming that “Once food was all you could eat”. He emphasizes throughout his essay, that what is being sold in our local supermarkets is merely a chain of processed food products. I would endorse that, because in my newfound quest to find healthier gluten free foods, it is the number one rule of thumb is to steer clear of processed foods. He continues by stating that fresh foods such as: celery, carrots, potatoes, etc. are healthier for human consumption than those of processed goods. Pollan believes that nutrient enhanced foods are different from what our “great, great, grandmother would recognize as food”. I can corroborate that statement because when I was a child I remember going to my Great Aunts’ house and watching her prepare all my favorites. In retrospect, I can’t recall ever seeing a box of anything. She believed in the “from scratch” method of cooking that was handed down to her from generation to generation. For that matter, I don’t remember a measuring cup or any type of complicated way to determine how much of each ingredient to put in. All I remember is her saying a “Heap of this” and a “Pinch of that”. Pollan points out that many foods we eat today are not “food” but is the product of Nutritionism or “the key to understanding food is indeed the nutrient”. He continues to examine the idea through scientific reductionism, which identifies what nutrients Americans should eat in order to maintain a healthy diet. His views further...