Friday Follies


It’s Friday, and it’s snowing AGAIN!!! So here compliments of Mother Jones is commentary on food, both funny and serious.

First the title: “This Fast-Food-Loving, Organics-Hating Ivy League Prof Will Trick You Into Eating Better.” I have a problem with online headlines, which are generally dreadful, way too long, and mostly a sign of laziness. This one fails only because it fails to add “unhealthy.” This post should probably have a different headline, but I’m too fatigued to come up with something better.

Just to clarify, the excellent photos should discourage the prof’s supporters.

The contents are fascinating: setting – lighting, seating, music – has a huge influence on the quantity and quality of our consumption.

Professor Brian Wansink is more than a hypocrite. He orders fat (bacon, ranch dressing) with the lettuce offering the least food value (iceberg), soup with more fat, cheeseburger sliders, with a diet soda. What? No sugar to wash down all that cholesterol?

The studies, however, are more fascinating than his personal predilictions. Author Kiera Butler may have supplied the answer for the person studying why the deep-fried Snickers eaters are skinnier than the hamburger eaters. That word is “novelty.” It’s likely that the people eating the fat/sugar/chocolate do so once or twice a year, as opposed to the burger eaters who may visit MD or BK or W or FG, etc. several times a week.

The mint theory may have some carrying power beyond gum. I’ve noticed eating an Altoid influences my choices, mostly to buy things that won’t clash with it: tea and maybe some lettuce, or yeah, basil and parsley.

The plate and glass size option – smaller and taller – absolutely makes sense. One of the things I noticed when I packed up my parents’ house was that the dinner plates measured eleven inches (except for those fancy silver-plated service plates). The ones being sold now measure thirteen. Those extra two inches in diameter can hold beaucoup calories. I recommend, as Wansink does, luncheon plates.

Okay, so this turned way too serious, and I’m not done with the commentary. More to follow.


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