Friday, June 20, 2008

What's for Dinner?

I'm a huge fan of Michael Pollan's new book In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto. I finished it up at the beginning of the summer, and recently Lance had a chance to read it too. He thought it'd be good if we had a list of Pollan's "guidelines" for eating.

Basically, Pollan argues that Americans have lost their "culture" of food. We have no culture-governed rules, as do the French (for one). He explores the implications of that loss and continues the journey he started in The Omnivore's Dilemma (another great read). I thought it'd be nice to post the guidelines that I typed up, but I warn you--they are good advice, but the book offers great reasoning and details under each guideline, so I encourage you to go buy this book. Seriously. If you're interested in healthy eating.


· Don’t eat anything your great grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food.

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

· Avoid food products that make health claims

· Shop the peripheries of the supermarket and stay out of the middle

· Get out of the supermarket whenever possible


· Eat mostly plants, especially leaves

· You are what you eat eats too

· If you have the space, buy a freezer

· Eat well-grown food from healthy soils

· Eat wild foods when you can

· Be the kind of person who takes supplements (health-conscious!)

· Eat more like the French. Or the Italians. Or the Japanese. Or the Indians. Or the Greeks.

· Regard nontraditional foods with skepticism

· Don’t look for the magic bullet in the traditional diet

· Have a glass of wine for dinner


· Pay more, eat less

· Eat meals

· Do all your eating at a table

· Don’t get your fuel from the same place your car does

· Try not to eat alone

· Consult your gut

· Eat slowly

o Eating with the fullest pleasure—pleasure, that is, that does not depend on ignorance—is perhaps the profoundest enactment of our connection with the world. In this pleasure we experience and celebrate our dependence and our gratitude, for we are living from mystery, from creatures we did not make and powers we cannot comprehend. (Wendell Berry)

· Cook and, if you can, plant a garden

If you can't buy this book, at very least check it out from the public library. Personally, it's a book that I plan on loaning out, rereading, and otherwise getting more than one use out of, so I consider it a good investment. If you're extremely interested, pick up The Omnivore's Dilemma first--In Defense of Food is a continuation of much of the research and ideas he explores in that one.

1 comment:

bockstark.knits said...

That's a great list! If only I had the willpower (and energy!) to follow it! :)