Michael Pollan’s Rules for Eating. Make this year a good one.

From Michael Pollan’s book In Defense of Food, the rules seem more 1910 than 2010, but offer practical advice for those of you who like to have a friendly reminder around this time of year:

in-defense-of-food-cover11. Don’t eat anything your great-grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food.
2. 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. Pollan’s example: Sara Lee’s Soft & Smooth Whole Grain White Bread, which fails every test proposed by this rule. “If not for the indulgence of the Food and Drug Administration, (it) could not even be labeled “bread.”
3. Avoid products that make health claims. The FDA’s “qualified” health claims” are all but meaningless.
4. Shop the peripheries of the supermarket and stay out of the middle. “Processed foods products dominate the center aisles of the store while the cases of ostensibly fresh food–dairy, produce, meat and fish–line the walls.”
5. Get out of the supermarket whenever possible. Head to one of the many farmer’s markets. In January it’s not just root vegetables that are in season: grapefruit, pears, brussel sprouts, kale, and spinach are on the list.

And let’s face it: you should try and get your heart rate up at least a few times a week as well. Listen to the MP3 of Michael Pollan’s 2008 In Defense of Food talk at the Free Library here.


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