a great interview with him from Democracy Now. Check it out:Michael Pollan is a big deal. He’s one of the best food science journalists walking the earth and here’s
MICHAEL POLLAN: Nutritionism is the prevailing ideology in the whole world of food. And it’s not a science. It is an ideology. And like most ideologies, it is a set of assumptions about how the world works that we’re totally unaware of. And nutritionism, there’s a few fundamental tenets to it. One is that food is a collection of nutrients, that basically the sum of—you know, food is the sum of the nutrients it contains. The other is that since the nutrient is the key unit and, as ordinary people, we can’t see or taste or feel nutrients, we need experts to help us design our foods and tell us how to eat.Nutritionism is a cool concept. Eat for nutrients. Dr. Fuhrman’s nutritarian lifestyle is very similar. Remember the equation? No! Okay, here it is again:
Another assumption of nutritionism is that you can measure these nutrients and you know what they’re doing, that we know what cholesterol is and what it does in our body or what an antioxidant is. And that’s a dubious proposition.
And the last premise of nutritionism is that the whole point of eating is to advance your physical health and that that’s what we go to the store for, that’s what we’re buying. And that’s also a very dubious idea. If you go around the world, people eat for a great many reasons besides, you know, the medicinal reason. I mean, they eat for pleasure, they eat for community and family and identity and all these things. But we’ve put that aside with this obsession with nutrition.
And I basically think it’s a pernicious ideology. I mean, I don’t think it’s really helping us. If there was a trade-off, if looking at food this way made us so much healthier, great. But in fact, since we’ve been looking at food this way, our health has gotten worse and worse.
Health = Nutrition / CaloriesThe longer you eat a nutrient-dense vegetable-based diet, the more this equation becomes basic instinct—you know? Oh! And Dr. Fuhrman had some interesting comments about Michael Pollan and his work. Have a look:
Many of Michael Pollan’s points are interesting and valid, but some discourage people to look to science as motivation to direct healthier eating styles and lifestyles. It almost seems as if his statements support a false view that what you eat does not matter much, when in fact, we have tremendous control our health destiny via nutritional excellence. As I always say, “Nutrition is the prescription.” And Michael Pollen, I think, would support that high nutrient natural foods, not supplements is the key to good health.Speaking of high nutrient natural foods, I just had a fantastic mango!