Michael Pollan’s Food Rules – A Review

This small book is a great beginner’s guide on eating. If you are overweight or have been dieting for years, you’ve probably determined that there is no instant cure for what you have been doing for the last umpteen years. What Pollan does is give you quick rules to eat by that will get you as far, if not farther, than many diets. Muffin tops and spare tires might seem fashionable, but they are not very attractive or healthy. If you have them now in your twenties or thirties, it gets even more difficult to lose them as you age. So, no time like the present to read this little book to help you get started.

As a curious journalist, Pollan has written several books on food including In Defense of Food, The Omnivore’s Dilemma and Cooked. Try checking one out from a local library and by this time next year, you may just get a call to tell you to come pick it up or download it. This little book may be the only thing that is available by this author for free and it is a good start.

Nutrition is a relatively new science. The food companies want you to be their guinea pigs and try their new foods that are bound to be “healthy” in one aspect or another. By focusing on one element, vitamin, or nutrient at a time, they ignore other ingredients that are harmful and, as a result, perpetuate confusion and poor health. Thus, the food companies and the medical community are making a fortune at your expense. The only things for certain are that by eating highly processed foods, you will most likely be obese and diabetic and prone to heart disease and cancer. That is the result of the American diet.

Pollan sums it all up with “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” But he gives you 64 rules to guide you to that conclusion. One rule in particular that supports it is Rule 12 “Shop the peripheries of the supermarket and stay out of the middle.” That’s another way of saying eat fresh fruits and veggies, meat, fish and dairy and avoid processed foods.

So before going on a diet, make a record of what you are currently eating, follow Pollan’s rules and see if that doesn’t make a difference. If you think that eating healthy may cost a little more, it is much cheaper than what you will pay out to the medical community if you don’t make a change.