November 21, 2011

Food Rules- an eater's manual

 Have you heard of Michael Pollan before? I first read his book In Defense of Food a few years ago and was blown away by the common sense. It's easy to feel like the 'rules' change every five minutes- butter, margarine, back to butter, no-carbs, whole grains only, gluten free, where ever you look there is a different message- it's down right stressful! Pollan's book In Defense of Food gets down to the straightforward truths of what is actually good for our bodies and presents it in a way that you can understand and absorb. When TLC Book Tours let me know about his new book, Food Rules- an eater's manual, I couldn't wait to read it. The timing couldn't be better with the onset of the holiday season. Every time I open up a magazine or read a blog I think about the holiday and the traditions- the parties, the food, it is the most wonderful time of the year. It's also an easy time to overindulge and forget the common sense that we should really hold on to.

This book is full of the common sense that we all need! Food Rules is a slim and beautiful book, thanks to the lovely illustrations by Maira Kalman. It's nicely organized and easy to delve right into. I read it a little at a time and walked away with a smart, simple new idea to process each time. Some of my favorites? "If You're Not Hungry Enough to Eat an Apple, Then You're Probably Not Hungry." I've found myself repeating that without realized it when the mid-afternoon munchies set it. And hooray- it's apple season! Not surprisingly, I do feel better after snacking on an apple than after grabbing some chocolate from the pantry.

Another I loved- "Don't Eat Anything Your Great Grandmother Wouldn't Recognize as Food." Foods that come to mind- spray margarine and go-gurt. I can't imagine that our ancestors ate either of those. I love chocolate Cheerios, I really do, but can there be any doubt which breakfast is going to make our bodies happier, that or a bowl of oatmeal and berries? And food that doesn't ever go rotten, is that actually food? If the bugs don't want to eat it, why would we, is there any actual food left in it? I think deep down we can tell what our bodies really need without the input of advertisers and other people looking to make a profit despite the costs to ourselves. Reading Pollan's wise words accompanied with Kalman's gorgeous illustrations has inspired me to do better and not in the unobtainable, crazy lifestyle and budget way that can overwhelm. I walked away from this book feeling I could choose better for myself and my family, that we can make simple changes and turn these fresh and helpful ideas into habits.
Thanks to TLC for providing me a copy of the book to review. Stop by the tour list here to see the book tour schedule. You can see the book here on Amazon. It's lovely and one I will read over and over again.


  1. I am definitely going to check this book out! And I agree with everything you have said here, it is scary how much we rely on "fake" food. I never really noticed it until I started feeding my baby solids. Yogurt that is shelf stable, without refrigeration? For three years?! I don't even want to know what is in there, but I am NOT feeding it to my child!

  2. I'm glad you enjoyed this one! You're so right - it IS difficult to remember these simple food rules, especially around the holidays ...

    Thanks for being a part of the tour!