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In 1637, one Dutchman paid as much for a single tulip bulb as the going price of a town house in Amsterdam. Three and a half centuries later, Amsterdam is once again the mecca for people who care passionately about one particular plant -- thought this time the obsessions revolves around the intoxicating effects of marijuana rather than the visual beauty of the tulip. How could flowers, of all things, become such objects of desire that they can drive men to financial ruin? In The Botany of Desire, Michael Pollan argues that the answer lies at the heart of the intimately reciprocal relationship between people and plants. In telling the stories of four familiar plant species that are deeply woven into the fabric of our lives, Pollan illustrates how they evolved to satisfy humankinds's most basic yearnings -- and by doing so made themselves indispensable. For, just as we've benefited from these plants, the plants, in the grand co-evolutionary scheme that Pollan evokes so brilliantly, have done well by us. The sweetness of apples, for example, induced the early Americans to spread the species, giving the tree a whole new continent in which to blossom. So who is really domesticating whom? Weaving fascinating anecdotes and accessible science into gorgeous prose, Pollan takes us on an absorbing journey that will change the way we think about our place in nature.
In Cooked, Michael Pollan explores the previously uncharted territory of his own kitchen, discovering the enduring power of the four classical elements -- fire, water, air, and earth -- to transform the stuff of nature into delicious things to eat and drink.
We all witness, in advertising and on supermarket shelves, the fierce competition for our food dollars. In this engrossing exposé, Marion Nestle goes behind the scenes to reveal how the competition really works and how it affects our health. The abundance of food in the United States--enough calories to meet the needs of every man, woman, and child twice over--has a downside. Our over-efficient food industry must do everything possible to persuade people to eat more--more food, more often, and in larger portions--no matter what it does to waistlines or well-being. Like manufacturing cigarettes or building weapons, making food is big business. Food companies in 2000 generated nearly $900 billion in sales. They have stakeholders to please, shareholders to satisfy, and government regulations to deal with. It is nevertheless shocking to learn precisely how food companies lobby officials, co-opt experts, and expand sales by marketing to children, members of minority groups, and people in developing countries. We learn that the food industry plays politics as well as or better than other industries, not least because so much of its activity takes place outside the public view. Editor of the 1988 Surgeon General's Report on Nutrition and Health, Nestle is uniquely qualified to lead us through the maze of food industry interests and influences. She vividly illustrates food politics in action: watered-down government dietary advice, schools pushing soft drinks, diet supplements promoted as if they were First Amendment rights. When it comes to the mass production and consumption of food, strategic decisions are driven by economics--not science, not common sense, and certainly not health. No wonder most of us are thoroughly confused about what to eat to stay healthy. An accessible and balanced account, Food Politics will forever 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.
A pocket compendium of food wisdom from the author of The Omnivore's Dilemma and In Defense of Food, Michael Pollan, our nation's most trusted resource for food-related issues, offers this indispensible guide for anyone concerned about health and food.
The environmental "tipping point" we approach is more palpable each day, and people are seeing it in ways they can no longer ignore--we need only turn on the news to hear the litany of what is wrong around us. Serious reflection, inspiration, and direction on how to approach the future are now critical. Hope Beneath Our Feet creates a space for change with stories, meditations, and essays that address the question, "If our world is facing an imminent environmental catastrophe, how do I live my life right now?" This collection provides tools, both practical and spiritual, to those who care about our world and to those who are just now realizing they need to care. Featuring prominent environmentalists, artists, CEOs, grassroots activists, religious figures, scientists, policy makers, and indigenous leaders, Hope Beneath Our Feet shows readers how to find constructive ways to channel their energies and fight despair with engagement and participation. Presenting diverse strategies for change as well as grounds for hope, the contributors to this anthology celebrate the ways in which we can all engage in beneficial action for ourselves, our communities, and the world.Contributors include: Diane Ackerman, Paul Hawken, Derrick Jensen, Barbara Kingsolver, Francis Moore Lappé, Barry Lopez, Bill McKibben, Michael Pollan, Alice Walker, Howard Zinn.
Amid the widespread confusion about nutrition, Pollan proposes an answer to the question of what we should eat that comes down to 7 words: Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.
What shall we have for dinner? For omnivores like ourselves, this simple question has always posed a dilemma: When you can eat just about anything nature (or the supermarket) has to offer, deciding what you should eat will inevitably stir anxiety, especially when some of the foods on offer might shorten your life. Today, buffeted by one food fad after another, America is suffering from what can only be described as a national eating disorder. The omnivore's dilemma has returned with a vengeance, as the cornucopia of the modern American supermarket and fast-food outlet confronts us with a bewildering and treacherous food landscape. What's at stake in our eating choices is not only our own and our children's health, but the health of the environment that sustains life on earth. The Omnivores Dilemma is a groundbreaking book in which one of America's most fascinating, original, and elegant writers turns his own omnivorous mind to the seemingly straightforward question of what we should have for dinner. The question has confronted us since man discovered fire, but, according to Michael Pollan, the bestselling author of The Botany of Desire, how we answer it today, at the dawn of the twenty-first century, may well determine our very survival as a species. Should we eat a fast-food hamburger? Something organic? Or perhaps something we hunt, gather, or grow ourselves? To find out, Pollan follows each of the food chains that sustain us industrial food, organic or alternative food, and food we forage ourselves from the source to a final meal, and in the process develops a definitive account of the American way of eating. His absorbing narrative takes us from Iowa cornfields to food-science laboratories, from feedlots and fast-food restaurants.
The New York Times bestseller that's changing America's diet is now perfect for younger readers. "What's for dinner?" seemed like a simple question--until journalist and supermarket detective Michael Pollan delved behind the scenes. From fast food and big organic to small farms and old-fashioned hunting and gathering, this young readers' adaptation of Pollan's famous food-chain exploration encourages kids to consider the personal and global health implications of their food choices. In a smart, compelling format with updated facts, plenty of photos, graphs, and visuals, as well as a new afterword and backmatter, The Omnivore's Dilemma serves up a bold message to the generation that needs it most: It's time to take charge of our national eating habits--and it starts with you.
At a turning point in his life, writer Michael Pollan found himself dreaming of a small wood-frame hut in the woods near his house--a place to work, but also a "shelter for daydreams." Weaving the practical with the philosophical, this book presents a captivating personal inquiry into the art of architecture, the craft of building, and the meaning of modern work. Line drawings throughout. Size C. 320 pp. National ads & publicity. 35,000 print.
Michael Pollan's unmatched ability to draw lines of connection between our everyday experiences- whether eating, gardening, or building-and the natural world has been the basis for the popular success of his many works of nonfiction, including the genre-defining bestsellers The Omnivore's Dilemma and In Defense of Food. With this updated edition of his earlier book A Place of My Own, readers can revisit the inspired, intelligent, and often hilarious story of Pollan's realization of a room of his own-a small, wooden hut, his "shelter for daydreams"-built with his admittedly unhandy hands. Inspired by both Thoreau and Mr. Blandings, A Place of My Own not only works to convey the history and meaning of all human building, it also marks the connections between our bodies, our minds, and the natural world.
Una guía sencilla para comer de manera inteligente Comer no tiene por qué ser tan complicado. En esta época de dietas milagrosas demasiado elaboradas y consejos contradictorios sobre salud y nutrición, Saber comer nos ofrece 64 reglas básicas para nuestra alimentación diaria. Escrito con claridad, precisión y una agudeza que lo ha llevado a convertirse en un bestseller, este manual indispensable bebe de una gran variedad de tradiciones y nos muestra cómo las distintas culturas han alcanzado a través de los siglos una sabiduría común sobre la comida. Saber comer es un manual perfecto para gente con sentido común y para todo aquel que alguna vez se haya preguntado "¿qué, cuándo, y cómo debería comer?".
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