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What to Eat Hardcover – May 2, 2006
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Nestle walks readers through every supermarket section--produce, meat, fish, dairy, packaged foods, bottled waters, and more--decoding labels and clarifying nutritional and other claims (in supermarket-speak, for example, "fresh" means most likely to spoil first, not recently picked or prepared), and in so doing explores issues like the effects of food production on our environment, the way pricing works, and additives and their effect on nutrition.
What Nestle reveals is both discouraging and empowering. Through ubiquitous advertising, almost universal food availability, the growth of portion size, and unchecked marketing to kids, were encouraged to eat more than we need, with consequent negative impact on our health. Knowledge is indeed power, and Nestle's lively, witty, and thoroughly enlightening book--the work, readers quickly see, of a food lover intent on increasing sensual satisfaction at table as well as promoting health--will help its readers become completely cognizant about food shopping. It's a must for anyone who eats and buys food and wants to do both better. --Arthur Boehm
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
More About the Author
She has held faculty positions at Brandeis University and the UCSF School of Medicine. From 1986-88, she was senior nutrition policy advisor in the Department of Health and Human Services and managing editor of the 1988 Surgeon General's Report on Nutrition and Health.
Her research examines scientific, economic, and social influences on food choice and obesity, with an emphasis on the role of food marketing.
She is the author of three prize-winning books: Food Politics: How the Food Industry Influences Nutrition and Health (California Press, 2002, revised edition, 2007), Safe Food: The Politics of Food Safety (California Press, 2003, revised edition 2010), and What to Eat (North Point Press, 2006). Her latest book, Pet Food Politics: The Chihuahua in the Coal Mine, was published by California Press in 2008. Feed Your Pet Right, co-authored with Malden Nesheim, will be published by Free Press in May, 2010.
She writes the Food Matters column for the San Francisco Chronicle, and blogs daily (almost) at www.foodpolitics.com and for the Atlantic Food Channel at http://amcblogmte4.atlantic-media.us/food/nutrition.
Top Customer Reviews
In my quest to eat better and find the true meaning behind food companies claims of how healthy their products are I found Marion Nestle's book `Food Politics', while it was interesting my eyes started to glaze over (I'm not really fond of politics or boring text-book books). I gained a little knowledge that food companies could not be trusted in what they preach about their products because their sole purpose is to sell their products not for the consumer's health.
Then I found she had a new book coming, `What to Eat'. I already knew that Nestle had years of experience as a nutritionist and was more impartial to a person's health than promoting something. You can pretty much bet she wasn't on a payroll of a food company or work for the government, though she was on a national committee a while back, since she really dressed them down for irresponsibility to the public.
I am surprised and saddened to find that the government who is supposed to watch out for the welfare of their people take contributions in the millions to `look the other way' while corporations are allowed to throw out claims that sugary, over processed, artificially colored and flavored foods are whole grain and healthy for a balanced diet.
This is one of the reasons I read this book. Artificial sweeteners give me headaches but when I looked on the internet about them I read from one end of the pendulum in `it's healthy and good for you' to the other `its cancer forming and bad for you'. Who do you believe? You know a good share of these websites are the producers of the products and their competition.Read more ›
Starting with this book 'What to Eat' the author does an excellent job of explaining the psychology of food from its invention (since so much is man made or processed), to the thousand mile journey it makes, even if organic, to most grocery stores, and the vast amount of waste that is involved in getting even organic fruits and vegetables to your local grocer. And that local grown fruits and vegetables are often turned down for local sale in grocery stores, but packed and shipped across country, all as part of a man made game plan. As is the label game and how many label issues are voluntary and not mandated like for genetically modified foods.
Her section on dairy is good. Personally I buy organic milk from here in northern California and no matter where we have lived I have sought out locals who would allow me to make a 'donation' for their raw milk, since I prefer to make my own yogurt, butter, cheese etc. The taste of regular homogenized milk from the store tastes horrid to me. Probably because its altered so much to allow for weeks on the grocery shelf. How I wish people would demand that their grocer carry dairy products from humane farms that are also whole and healthy.
Her section on meat is equally interesting. As she notes well, those who cull (kill, slaughter) the meat Americans eat work for low wages in very dangerous conditions, with the buyer all to willing to ignore just what happens to get that piece of meat on ones dinner table or fast food meal.Read more ›
I also think she glosses over the nutritional differences between organic and non-organic produce, eggs and meat, which can be substantial. Explanations are somewhat simplistic and people with prior nutrition and/or science backgrounds will likely be frustrated by overly-simplified claims and explanations and the lack of detailed specific explanations about nutrients and why they are important.
Overall, this book provides a very basic overview of nutrition according to the status quo and gives the impression that nutritionists have it all figured out now, when in fact they don't. Her sources for bold claims are rarely quoted. She refers to studies generally, but not specifically. It's almost as if she drew conclusions by reading only the abstracts of many journal articles without reading the entire article.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Balanced, light-hearted but laden with insight, information and guidance toward smarter and healthier decisions about food and personal dietary habits.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Although somewhat outdated, this book is great! Marion Nestle covers some very complicated issues in a way that your average person can totally understand. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Amazon Customer
Absolutely fantastic book. Very informative and straightforward explanations that are easy to understand. Read morePublished 6 months ago by Avery Tidlund
A confusing book that seems to have trouble getting a message across. Here's a radical idea for anyone considering purchasing. Read morePublished 6 months ago by ryan
I love this book! Marion Nestle shares her breadth of knowledge about food, nutrition and the food industry with a common sense approach.Published 6 months ago by Melanie Young
A amazing experience through foods'world. She is my best counselor about.Published 6 months ago by Lacerda
I really like this book. I am trying to fine tune my nutrition and this is certainly helpful. I am a vegan but if I was not and read the chapter on beef I would certainly be at... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Barbara
Marion Nestle provides a voice of reason in the chaos of gluten-free this, soy-free that, more protein, fewer carbs, no sugar... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Vegangel