The Food We Eat

Where does our food come from? How does the global food system impact us? These books examine the food industry, as well as how and what we eat.

Books by Marion Nestle | The food industry | The food we eat | Documentaries

Related event:
Marion Nestle presents Red Scare: China and the New Global Food System, Feb. 11

Books by Marion Nestle

Pet Food Politics: The Chihuahua in the Coal Mine
By Marion Nestle
The acclaimed author of Food Politics tells the gripping story of how, in early 2007, a few telephone calls about sick cats set off the largest recall of consumer products in U.S. history and an international crisis over the safety of imported goods ranging from food to toothpaste, tires, and toys.

Food Politics: How the Food Industry Influences Nutrition and Health
By Marion Nestle
An accessible and balanced account, Food Politics will change the way we respond to food industry marketing practices. By explaining how much the food industry influences government nutrition policies and how cleverly it links its interests to those of nutrition experts, this path-breaking book helps us understand more clearly than ever before what we eat and why.

What to Eat
By Marion Nestle
A renowned nutritionist takes readers on a guided tour of the supermarket, explaining the issues with verve and wit as well as a scientist's expertise and a food lover's experience. She untangles the issues, decodes the labels, clarifies the health claims, and debunks the sales hype.

The food industry

Poisons On Our Plates book jacket

Poisons On Our Plates: The Real Food Safety Problem in the United States
By Michele Morrone
Drawing on disturbing stories told by food safety professionals as well as on statistical studies, the author paints a grimly fascinating picture of the impact of bacteria and viruses on our food supply and how they can make us sick. Morrone examines the increased risks that come with the rise in food imports from high-contamination countries such as China and Mexico. She advocates major changes to our nation's environmental health policies in order to control the growing dangers that foodborne illness pose to public health.

Appetite for Profit: How the Food Industry Undermines Our Health and How to Fight Back
By Michele Simon
Appetite for Profit describes food industry lobbying, front groups, and other tactics that operate to undermine nutrition policy in schools and elsewhere. Additionally, this book tells how to see through corporate promises; illustrates the importance of rhetoric to control the debate; informs how to respond; celebrates the unsung heroes in the fight; and provides reliable resources on how to get involved.

Appetite for Change: How the Counterculture Took On the Food Industry
By Warren J. Belasco
This book examines the 1960s-70s counterculture and its impact on the food system. Belasco discusses what he calls “countercuisine” which includes organic and ethnic food and vegetarian diets and how the mainstream food industry responded.

Food Fight: The Inside Story of the Food Industry, America's Obesity Crisis, and What We Can Do About It
By Kelly D. Brownell and Katherine Battle Horgen
The authors trace the subtle convergence of public indifference, corporate opportunism, and tradition that in a few short decades has transformed the American waistline and has created a tidal wave of disease. They offer an unflinching assessment of a culture that feeds its pets better than its children, manipulates children into poor eating habits with toy giveaways and in-school promotions, and makes it nearly impossible for the poor to be healthy. Dr. Brownell outlines bold public policy initiatives for reversing the trend. He and Dr. Horgen describe steps individuals can take to help safeguard their own and their families' health. And they offer a workable plan for improving individual and family eating and exercise habits.

The food we eat

 A Natural History of Four Meals book jacket

The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
By Michael Pollan
Pollan writes about the ecology of the food humans eat and why--what it is, in fact, that we are eating. Discussing industrial farming, organic food, and what it is like to hunt and gather food, this is a surprisingly honest and self-aware account of the evolution of the modern diet.

Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal
By Eric Schlosser
To a degree both engrossing and alarming, the story of fast food is the story of postwar America. Schlosser, a National Magazine Award-winning journalist, charts the fast food industry's enormous impact on our health, landscape, economy, politics and culture as he transforms the way America thinks about what it eats.

In Defense Of Food: An Eater's Manifesto
By Michael Pollan
From the author of the bestselling The Omnivores Dilemma comes this bracing and eloquent manifesto that shows readers how they might start making thoughtful food choices that will enrich their lives and enlarge their sense of what it means to be healthy.

Moveable Feasts: From Ancient Rome to the 21st Century, the Incredible Journeys of the Food We Eat
By Sarah Murray
Today the things we eat and drink have crossed oceans, continents, and even airspace before reaching the dinner table. The complex systems and technologies devised throughout the centuries to deliver our food supply reveal surprising things about politics, culture, economies--and our appetites. Moveable Feasts takes a novel look at the economics, logistics, and environmental impact of food, and brings new perspective to debates about where we get our meals.

The Way We Eat: Why Our Food Choices Matter
By Peter Singer and Jim Mason
More people than ever before are paying attention to the food they buy and eat: where it comes from, how it's produced, and whether or not it was raised humanely. Singer and Mason examine the diets of three typical families to explore the impact our food choices have on the future of life on earth. They also identify six empowering ethical principles that conscientious consumers should consider when shopping for groceries or eating out.

Documentary films

Super Size Me

Super Size Me
In Super Size Me, filmmaker Morgan Spurlock unravels the American obesity epidemic by interviewing experts nationwide and by subjecting himself to a McDonald's only diet for thirty days straight. His Sundance award-winning feature is as entertaining as it is horrifying as it dives into corporate responsibility, nutritional education, school lunch programs and how we as a nation are eating ourselves to death.

King Corn: You Are What You Eat
Fueled by curiosity and a dash of naiveté, college buddies Ian Cheney and Curt Ellis return to their ancestral home of Greene, Iowa, to find out how the modest corn kernel conquered America. With the help of real farmers, powerful fertilizer, government aid, and genetically modified seeds, the friends manage to grow one acre of corn. Along the way, they unlock the hidden truths about America's modern food system.

The Future of Food
Before compiling your next grocery list, you might want to watch this eye-opening documentary, which sheds light on a shadowy relationship between agriculture, big business and government. By examining the effects of biotechnology on the nation's smallest farmers, director Deborah Koons Garcia reveals the unappetizing truth about genetically modified foods: You could unknowingly be serving them for dinner.

Book descriptions provided by BookLetters.

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