Farms, Food and Obesity
"You are what you eat" (or, for many herbalists, "You are what you assimilate"): important adages, helping to bring the idea of good, whole food up from the nether reaches of our consciousness. Michael Pollan, whom I believe to be a pretty observant plant person, has given this age-old wisdom a bit of a twist in a New York Times Magazine article entitled "You are what you grow". The general idea is that part of the problem with the modern "obesity epidemic" are the basic ingredients of the modern American diet: cheap, industrialized corn, wheat, and soy (sugar, starch and oil - with a little food coloring, salt, and some hydrogenation, you can make almost anything you want), and the government subsidies that keep it all flowing. There are some interesting socioeconomic observations in this article as well. All in all, a fascinating take on the roots of cultural wellness, and our often self-defacing relationship with food.