Healthy, unhealthy, good food, bad food, fat, skinny, diet, weight: all these words have been used to define what society views as the key to a balanced or unbalanced life. In the essay, Food for Thought: Resisting the Moralization of Eating, Mary Maxfield takes a look into the stigma of eating habits, health, and dieting in western society. Maxfield supports her claims by analyzing and refuting Michael Pollan’s essay, Escape from the Western Diet. Although it is common knowledge that many people struggle to understand what is essentially “healthy” and “unhealthy”, there are many experts in the field of nutrition that claim to have the key to a perfect diet. Maxfield ultimately disclaims these ideas by bringing to light information that …show more content…
By this statement, Maxville shows readers that even “experts” undermine themselves, and do not always know or give accurate information on how to live a healthy life.
Weight is a part of every human beings life. Every one weights something. In society, it is commonly found that people mistakenly judge their health based on their weight. America has thousands of health experts and nutritionist who claim themselves as protectors of health, “helping a nation stricken with heart disease, diabetes, and cancer” (Maxville 443). They believe that eating is simply for fueling the body and you should eat mostly plants, but not too much. Maxville uses the vast theory of health experts to tie in the point that, “each of these maladies is tied to our diet and essentially our weight. As a culture we no longer discuss healthy eating without also discussing unhealthy weights” (Maxville 444). While Maxville believes that the bigger issue is not weight, but linking nutrition and body type. While, Pollan warns readers of eating too much, he never mentions that it is equally as fatal to eat too little. Pollan states in his essay that overeating is the “greatest threat” to our survival. Maxville uses Pollan’s statements on the topic of weight to prove that being unhealthy should not be tied solely to being overweight, because being under weight is equally unhealthy. To further discredit the claims Pollan makes linking weight to health, Maxville states, “A growing group of academics who
Mary Maxfield focuses on Pollan’s comparison between how French people eat so unhealthily, famously indulging in cheese, cream, and wine yet remain on average healthier than Americans verses Americans’ notably unhealthy population preoccupied with the idea of eating healthy. The “they say” argument in this essay is why can the French get away with eating unhealthy, but Americans can not? Pollan points out that “our” definition of healthy eating is driven by a well-funded corporate machine. According to Pollan, the food industry, along with nutrition science and journalism, is capitalizing on our confusion over how to eat. Pollen wants us to focus less on what we eat and more on smaller portion sizes. For example, the fast food industry in America has contributed to American’s over eating by upsizing their products. The essay focuses on a healthy body weight and points out that Americans see fatness as unhealthy and thinness as healthy. Culturally our views of weight skew our views of what foods are right to eat. In other words Americans do not understand that what a person eats is not as important as how much they
In Michael Pollan’s essay “Escape from the Western Diet,” he informs Americans about the western diet and believes they need to escape from it. The reason Americans should escape the western diet is to avoid the harmful effects associated with it such as “western diseases” (Pollan, 434). To support his view on the issue, Pollan describes factors of the western diet that dictate what Americans believe they should eat. These factors include scientists with their theories of nutritionism, the food industry supporting the theories by making products, and the health industry making medication to support those same theories. Overall, Pollan feels that in order to escape this diet, people need to get the idea of it out of their heads. In turn he
As a culture and as individuals, we no longer seem to know what we should and should not eat. When the old guides of culture and national cuisine and our mothers’ advice no longer seem to operate, the omnivore’s dilemma returns and you find yourself where we do today—utterly bewildered and conflicted about one of the most basic questions of human life: What should I eat? We’re buffeted by contradictory dietary advice: cut down on fats one decade, cut down on carbs the next. Every day’s newspaper brings news of another ideal diet, wonder-nutrient, or poison in the food chain. Hydrogenated vegetable oils go from being the modern alternatives to butter to a public health threat, just like that. Food marketers bombard us with messages that this or that food is “heart healthy” or is “part of a nutritious meal”. Without a stable culture of food to guide us, the omnivore’s dilemma has returned with a vengeance. We listen to scientists, to government guidelines, to package labels—to anything but our common sense and traditions. The most pleasurable of activities—eating—has become heavy with anxiety. The irony is, the more we worry about what we eat, the less healthy and fatter we seem to become.
There are more ways to shun obesity. Michael Pollan, who wrote “Escape from the western diet”, claims that the fast food industry is one of the main reasons why people struggle with their health. He believes that the processed food we consume gives us harmful deceases. Pollan urges us to listen to his words to avoid the western diet, he preaches that we should start eating healthier and to put more time and effort when it comes to buying food. Pollan provides us with his rules as well and claims that it will help us plot our way out of the western diet. Also, Pollan informs us that when it to the intake we tend to over eat, thus it becomes a huge threat to our health. The government has also made an attempt to put a stop to obesity by inverting an array of food options. By focusing on the main causes of obesity, Pollan overlooks the deeper problem of the lack of insufficient information, thus he leaves us with a lot of question marks .
McCorcle’s essay ‘Her Chee-to Heart is an informational essay with persuasive undertone that’s main point is that food has a positive emotional value. While the essay is best defined as informational, much of the essay's foundation is coming from the author's personal experience and thus, a more persuasive tone becomes embedded. There is a clear limitation exposed in McCorcle’s essay that cannot be ignored. While she promotes food as a form of comfort, it is unhealthy food that is most associated with in her essay. Turning to unhealthy foods as a form of comfort can develop into a detrimental habit.
Whether or not a person wants a burger and french-fries’ or a salad from the salad bar, the decision should be up to him/her. Two articles share views on food, “What You Eat Is Your Business” by Radley Balko and “Junking Junk Food” by Judith Warner. These two authors wrote articles about how they felt about food and how it’s related to obesity. However, Radley Balko would not approve of Judith Warner’s views on food for the reason that the two authors have different viewpoints on the aspect of the government helping people to make better food choices. Warner and Balko also has different views on the ideas which are that eating is a psychological matter; and eating healthy should be a personal matter.
Over the last several decades, the diet of society has been continually changing. This has resulted in different formulas for nutrition and the proper portions of foods that must be consumed. To fully understand the various arguments requires looking at numerous viewpoints. This will be accomplished by focusing on Michael Pollan's Escape from the Western Diet in contrast with Mary Maxfield's Food as thought: Resisting the Moralization of Eating. These views will highlight how diet and nutrition is based upon individual opinions. This is the focus of the thesis.
Many Americans are concern about the increment of disease and obesity caused by the limited options of healthy food, “since America is saturated with junk food advertising”(Khullar 135). However, in consequence of the absence of an American cuisine, fast food restaurants and foods high in fats offered by supermarkets, has become the first option to Americans. After all, Pollan’s argument that the lack of a stable traditional cuisine is the consequence of America’s national eating disorder and the steady national diet is reasonable since there are many factors that support his claim. For example, Mary Roach, in Liver and Opinions: Why We Eat What We Eat and Despite the Rest, claims that the food we eat is influenced by people’s cultural background; in other words, people are used to eating what their parents feed them when they were kids. “In addition, Americans have a conflict with having a stable eating habit; they tend to change their diet often”(Roach 123). Overall, Pollan’s is comprehensible while he argues that Americans do not have a stable culture of food, which causes an instability in people’s
In the Introduction to “Food as Thought: Resisting the Moralization of Eating”, Mary Maxfield argues that food and the way we consume it is not something that should define the obesity epidemic in America. A controversial issue discussed has been whether we should have theories or ideas where diet works best to increase weight loss or whether we should have any diets to begin with. On one hand, Maxfield argues against the Health Professor Michael Pollan, who proposes a diet idea to reduce the problem of unhealthy eating in America. While also reprimanding scientists and health doctors who suggests their own different diets. On the other hand, she introduces that food is just food and does not need to be differentiated since one may seem
When it comes to the topic of obesity, most will readily agree that it is a growing dilemma. This argument has many writers bringing different responses. Two explanations are debated in What You Eat is Your Business by Radley Balko and Don’t Blame the Eater by David Zinczenko. Both pieces create a good stance on the topic of obesity. Balko’s piece, however, has a better all around flow, organization and consistency.
The readings for this week’s response paper consist of the second half of the book Fat-Talk Nation: The Human Cost of America’s War on Fat by Susan Greenhalgh. Unlike the first half, the second half of the book gives a broader look at the American weight obsession. Skinny shamming, the obsession with “normality”, health risks and relationship issues caused by the American public’s obsession with weight are all addressed in the last chapters (Greenhalgh 2015). Overall, the book does a good job of addressing the aspect of weight through biocitizenship. As the author states throughout, individuals are pressured into achieving a certain weight in order to fit into the mainstream culture’s ideal of a “healthy body” (Greenhalgh 2015). This is achieved through media,
In the American culture, obesity is seen as a bodily abnormality and deviance that should be corrected. Obesity has indeed become one of the most stigmatizing bodily characteristics in our culture (Brink, 1994). In the Western culture, thinness does not just mean the size of the
Dalton revisits the controversial issue of whether obesity should be declared a disease or not. In the author's opinion, obesity is not a disease. With that in mind, this book will offer a sound basis for my assertion that obesity cannot be regarded a disease but a contributing factor to ill health.
The point at which the one last straw or nerve remains is a point at which an issue has been ignored until it can be avoided no more. The average weight of Americans- currently 24 pounds more than it was in 1960- is an issue that has been ignored for long enough and must become a matter that is acknowledged and discussed. Obesity affects both society and government; Therefore, society and government alike are responsible for facilitating this epidemic. In order to fight this health crisis, society should educate and encourage individuals about the risks and preventions of obesity but should not associate weight with a concrete appearance that cannot be broken, and government should should offer incentives without forcing people to become healthy by laws.
One contemporary problem of health is obesity. Obesity is considered a lifestyle disease since it is not infectious or contagious and because it is chronic. But since it is labeled as a lifestyle disease, many people, both lay people and experts, only look at overweight and obese individual’s lifestyles and criticizes them. But not to look at wider possibilities that could be having a great influence on this epidemic (Warwick-Booth, Cross, and Lowcock, 2012). This can be seen in how people talk about obesity and also obese and overweight people. It also affects how people try to solve this problem.