A provocative look at how and what Americans eat and why-a flavorful blend of The Omnivore's Dilemma, Salt Sugar Fat, and Freakonomics that reveals how the way we live shapes the way we eat. Food writer and Culinary Institute of America program director Sophie Egan takes readers on an eye-opening journey through the American food psyche, examining the connections between the values that define our national character-work, freedom, and progress-and our eating habits, the good and the bad. Egan explores why these values make for such an unstable, and often unhealthy, food culture and, paradoxically, why they also make America's cuisine so great. Egan raises a host of intriguing questions: Why does McDonald's have 107 items on its menu? Why are breakfast sandwiches, protein bars, and gluten-free anything so popular? Will bland, soulless meal replacements like Soylent revolutionize our definition of a meal? The search for answers takes her across the culinary landscape, from the prioritization of convenience over health to the unintended consequences of "perks" like free meals for employees; from the American obsession with "having it our way" to the surge of Starbucks, Chipotle, and other chains individualizing the eating experience; from high culture-artisan and organic and what exactly "natural" means-to low culture-the sale of 100 million Taco Bell Doritos Locos Tacos in ten weeks. She also looks at how America's cuisine-like the nation itself-has been shaped by diverse influences from across the globe. Devoured weaves together insights from the fields of psychology, anthropology, food science, and behavioral economics as well as myriad examples from daily life to create a powerful and unique look at food in America.
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"Ann Richardson's persuasive narration sheds light on the paradoxes and perils of our nation's cultural food values. This illuminating audiobook examines how our lives drive how we eat and how the way we eat affects how we perceive our day. Richardson's smooth tones reflect the consumers' na•vetŽ and fascination with food and what they choose to eat. These attitudes are ironic, given the debilitating effect that the typical American meal is actually having on them. Richardson's inflections convey surprise, excitement, and dismay at the descriptions of food-related phenomena such as brunch queues and Super Bowl snacks and how the nation's values of work, freedom, and progress not only shape our food culture but also hurt us by misdirecting our food mores. M.F. Winner of AudioFile Earphones Award © AudioFile 2016, Portland, Maine"
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