Food Journal

 The purpose of this assignment is to gauge the level of difficulty in adhering to Pollan’s advice found within Part III, based on your current life situation. Over the course of the next four weeks, you will need to select at least 10 of the 15 suggestions that are listed below. In your food journal, you will then write about your experience of experimenting with these regulations. Each suggestion that you try to follow constitutes one ‘experiment’. You should make every effort to fully engage each of the selected recommendations. It is understandable that this may be difficult and I encourage you to write about why and how this difficulty emerges. You can also discuss some of the ways these practices might be made easier. What is most important is to document these experiments and the experience that you gain from them. The purpose is to get you to take some data on your life and the influence of food upon it. Self-reflection is the name of the game. Important information that should be monitored includes, the date of the experiment, what particular suggestion you are attempting to follow, the exact action that you took to try to oblige the rule, the challenges associated with following this rule, and the experiential results of following, or attempting to follow it. How did you feel? Any change relative to other, more ‘normal’ days? Is this a change you would be interested in perpetuating in your ‘normal’ life? Why or why not? You can run these 10 experiments on 10 different days–one for each suggestion–or you can run two experiments per day for 5 days. You are not allowed to run 10 experiments in one day. There is too much data to collect to make 10 simultaneous experiments effective. You will not be able to as easily locate the source of the change in your mood, hunger, experience, etc. Two experiments per day is the maximum. Each experiment should be reflected upon with at least 200 words. So, the entire document should be at least 2,000 words. Show your ability to thoroughly and thoughtfully analyze your own eating habits in a greater context. Pollan’s suggestions, with a couple eliminated, simply because they don’t make sense in the context of the course: Don’t eat anything your great-grandmother wouldn’t recognize as food. (148-150) Avoid food products containing ingredients that are a) unfamiliar b) unpronounceable c) more than five in number or that include d) high-fructose corn syrup. (150-154) Avoid food products that make health claims. (154-157) Shop the peripheries of the supermarket and stay out of the middle. (157) Get out of the supermarket whenever possible. (157-161) Eat mostly plants, especially leaves. (162-167) Eat well-grown food from healthy soils. (169-170) Eat wild foods when you can. (170-172) Eat more like the French, or the Italians, or the Japanese, or the Indians, or the Greeks. (173-176) Pay more, eat less. (183-188) Eat meals. With others. (188-192) Do all your eating at a table. (192) Don’t get your fuel from the same place your car does [or RESTOR if no car]. (192) Consult your gut & eat slowly. (193-197) Cook. (197-201) Each of these suggestions comes with a fairly detailed explanation, that you should be sure to consult. If it is apparent that you didn’t understand the suggestion, you will not receive credit for the experiment.

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