The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan

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Summary
  1. Very interesting and eye-opening book which describes where our food comes from and the vast processes industrial food goes through before reaching our supermarkets. Also, corn is in everything.

Key Takeaways

  1. Industrial and processed foods are essentially not “real” food as they go through a multitude of stages before they reach the grocery store. The vast majority of today’s food contains more chemicals and preservatives than we care to know and a disturbing amount comes from cheap corn that the government keeps subsidizing
  2. Cheap food is truly not cheap because the cost of pollution and health epidemics is not factored into it
  3. Has a couple of very simple suggestions which will have tremendous impacts on reducing pollution as well as our society and its health. Eat locally grown fruits and vegetables and locally raised, grass-fed meats and other proteins.
  4. For the first time in human history, humans have changed what they eat on a massive scale, often based on fads. This is especially true in the US where Americans are obsessed with eating healthy but are actually the unhealthiest people. America has never had a culinary culture which is why it is more susceptible to fads which are often unbalanced
  5. Part of the omnivore’s dilemma is that humans have so many choices when it comes to what to eat. Other animals do not have to worry about this as they are genetically predisposed to eat only certain types of food
  6. Agriculture has reshaped our world more than anything else in history
  7. Eating is the closest people can get to nature and what we put into us deserves great deliberation

What I got out of it

  1. I think Pollan does an incredible job of making our scary food situation relatable and easy to follow by giving real world examples. While I think he repeats too often the fact that corn or a corn derivative is in almost everything, it is a point worth driving home. He makes an excellent argument that we essentially get to vote three times per day with our forks for how we want our food produced and where it should come from. I believe this should be taken very seriously before our health epidemic and global warming situation gets worse than it already is.

Buy The Omnivore’s Dilemma

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