From a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter at The New York Times comes the explosive story of the rise of the processed food industry and its link to the emerging obesity epidemic. Michael Moss reveals how companies use salt, sugar, and fat to addict us and, more important, how we can fight back.
Every year, the average American eats 33 pounds of cheese (triple what we ate in 1970) and 70 pounds of sugar (about 22 teaspoons a day). We ingest 8,500 milligrams of salt a day, double the recommended amount, and almost none of that comes from the shakers on our table. It comes from processed food. It’s no wonder, then, that one in three adults, and one in five kids, is clinically obese. It’s no wonder that 26 million Americans have diabetes, the processed food industry in the U.S. accounts for $1 trillion a year in sales, and the total economic cost of this health crisis is approaching $300 billion a year.
In Salt Sugar Fat, Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter Michael Moss shows how we got here. Featuring examples from some of the most recognizable (and profitable) companies and brands of the last half century - including Kraft, Coca-Cola, Lunchables, Kellogg, Nestlé, Oreos, Cargill, Capri Sun, and many more - Moss’s explosive, empowering narrative is grounded in meticulous, often eye-opening research.
Moss takes us inside the labs where food scientists use cutting-edge technology to calculate the "bliss point" of sugary beverages or enhance the "mouthfeel" of fat by manipulating its chemical structure. He unearths marketing campaigns designed - in a technique adapted from tobacco companies - to redirect concerns about the health risks of their products: Dial back on one ingredient, pump up the other two, and tout the new line as "fat-free" or "low-salt". He talks to concerned executives who confess that they could never produce truly healthy alternatives to their products even if serious regulation became a reality. Simply put: The industry itself would cease to exist without salt, sugar, and fat. Just as millions of "heavy users" - as the companies refer to their most ardent customers - are addicted to this seductive trio, so too are the companies that peddle them. You will never look at a nutrition label the same way again.
©2013 Michael Moss (P)2013 Random House Audio
"What happens when one of the country’s great investigative reporters infiltrates the most disastrous cartel of modern times: a processed food industry that’s making a fortune by slowly poisoning an unwitting population? You get this terrific, powerfully written book, jammed with startling disclosures, jaw-dropping confessions and, importantly, the charting of a path to a better, healthier future. This book should be read by anyone who tears a shiny wrapper and opens wide. That’s all of us." (Ron Suskind, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Confidence Men: Wall Street, Washington, and the Education of a President)
"In this meticulously researched book, Michael Moss tells the chilling story of how the food giants have seduced everyone in this country. He understands a vital and terrifying truth: that we are not just eating fast food when we succumb to the siren song of sugar, fat, and salt. We are fundamentally changing our lives - and the world around us.” (Alice Waters)
Stumbled upon audio books a little while ago and I enjoy them now. I mostly listen to books related to science, Buddhism, and some fantasy.
I found this book very informative on the industry of processed food. Making "something" people will buy and eat at the lowest cost possible. I was especially surprised the author was able to interview people and name names!
So many books of this type only list lists opinions from the author(s) and try to pass them on as factual which is nice, but not useful. This book goes the extra length by interviewing key industry people and explaining the research done and science behind processed food products
Naration was top notch, as I would expect from Scott Brick.
Nurse. Yarn snob. Bookworm. Cat lover. Color enthusiast. Fabric collector. Gardener
Yes! I found the information in this book to be so accessible. The sheer amount of research undertaken to write this book is phenomenal, yet Moss works through it in a very systematic way with engaging anecdotes to keep the reader interested and on track.
The Omnivore's Dilemma, Fastfood Nation
I was kind of disgusted by some of the information presented in the book. I felt myself adopting a rather cynical view of the food industry (which, I suppose, is the goal of the book). Even though I thought I knew quite a bit about the machinations of the food industry, I could not help but feel hoodwinked by the lengths that corporations will go to to keep consumers coming back for more.
I think that this book is a fantastic listen if you have any interest at all in the politics that surround food manufacturing and consumption in America. I found it to be very enlightening and the information I took in will certain guide my choices in the future.
I shouldn't be surprised at how manipulated our food supply is.. but wow - I really was.
This is a book that every parent and grandparent needs to read. It tells the truth about the processed foods we eat, and how they are developed, and how they can affect our health. Every parent and grandparent can make a difference - reading this book is a start. Calling this one of my "favorite" Audible books is kind of hard to say, because what I learned is not much fun. Read it.
Yes, its tells you the strategy employed by food giants
voice is kinda boring, yet its very good in explaining details
One of the most informative books I've read thus far, very eye opening.
Very interesting story telling
I thought this book was going to be a nutritional type of book, but it turned out to be a book about how the industry giants create foods, processed foods ... profit is driving them, not health of consumers. We all know that to some extent, but having someone lay out the facts brings to light how horribly unhealthy foods many of us eat are ... a must read for anyone who is concerned about their health. I think I'll be listening to it again real soon. Am now listening to the China Study and that is amazing as well!!
Likes: Cozy mysteries (cats a plus), personal memoirs,not too dark fantasy, books about the brain. Dislikes: Torture, animal cruelty.
I enjoyed this book and found it to be educational. It did feel a little long and definitely repetitive. The author on several occasions told the same story. For example, he went through the story of coming up with the new flavor for Dr Pepper and then later when he talks to someone who has documents on it goes through the whole thing again. It isn't really surprising to hear about how food companies disregarded health concerns, or even flat out manipulated people. It was probably more surprising that there were people in the industry who didn't want to do that. One thought I had while listening to how each product is so carefully designed to hit the consumer's "bliss point" with the exact amounts of sugar etc. was that processed food should all taste absolutely great, but in reality I don't think it does. I had mixed feelings about the discussion of whether food companies are responsible for the obesity epidemic. The book didn't manage to convince me that people shouldn't take more responsibility for what they consume, at least now that nutritional information has been made available to them. One thing the book definitely did not do was turn me off processed food altogether. In fact, talking to me about sugary cereal for 3 hours only made me want cereal. I even stopped for cereal while listening though I did select a cereal with no sugar, only to get home and be smugly eating it when I looked up to discover just how much sugar is in the skim milk I had poured on my sugar free cereal.
I am a 30 year old over-the-road truck driver. I listen to A LOT of audiobooks!
The main thing I liked about this book is that fact that it was not preachy. It simply gave the facts in an entertaining and informative way. And the facts that are presented, will scare the heck out of you.
Staggering what the food industry will do to make money at the expense of our lives and our health!
The Bliss - the moment the recipe is so perfect you have to have more! More sugar, or fat or salt or all three!
This is a must read if only to understand why North America is a country of obese people sedated on food like a drug sucking back deadly diet colas and eating fattening potato chips until we all have diabetes.
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