We are Food Prudes

We Americans have always had a problem taking pleasure in eating. We certainly have gone to unusual lengths to avoid it…the sheer abundance of food in America has bred “a vague indifference to food, manifested in a tendency to eat and run, rather than to dine and savor.” To savor food, to conceive of a meal as an aesthetic experience, has been regarded as evidence of effeteness, a form of foreign foppery…To the Christian social reformers of the nineteenth century, “The naked act of eating was little more than unavoidable…and was not to be considered a pleasure except with great discretion.”…Kellogg himself was outspoken in his hostility to the pleasures of eating: “The decline of a nation commences when gourmandizing begins.”
If that is so, America had little reason to worry.

– Michael Pollan, In Defense of Food, pp. 56 – 57.

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