Michael Pollan has become one of our most important writers about human nutrition. His book, The Omnivore’s Dilemma (2006), spelled out why the almost eight billion humans on this planet had better balance what we eat – for our own health and the health of the planet.
He published a small book in 2009 (Penguin Books) called Food Rules: An Eater’s Manual. His rules are around seven words in three brief statements: “Eat Food, Not Too Much, Mostly Plants.” How simple and wise is that?
These three statements make up the three parts of this small book, with lots of practical “rules.”
Here are some of the best:
- Don’t eat anything your great-grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food.
- Avoid food products containing ingredients that no ordinary human would keep in the pantry.
- Avoid foods that are pretending to be something they aren’t (like imitation butter).
- Shop the peripheries of the supermarket and stay out of the middle.
- Treat meat as a flavoring or special occasion food.
- Eat animals that have eaten well themselves.
- Don’t overlook the oily little fishes.
- The whiter the bread, the sooner you’ll be dead.
- Be the kind of person who takes supplements, then skip the supplements.
- Eat more like the French, or the Japanese, or the Italians, or the Greeks.
- Have a glass of wine with dinner.
- Stop eating before you’re full.
- Eat when you’re hungry, not when you’re bored.
- Eat slowly.
- Spend as much time enjoying the meal as it took to prepare it.
- Buy smaller plates and glasses.
- Serve a proper portion and don’t go back for seconds.
- Breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, dinner like a pauper.
And the last one:
- Break the rules once in awhile.
*This blog post was originally published at eDocAmerica*