On “Real” Food: a TED Talk everyone should watch


This is a recent TED Talk given by Robyn O’Brien, the author of The Unhealthy Truth: How Our Food Is Making Us Sick – And What We Can Do About It. It’s on food. She makes a pretty compelling case for the “Real Food” movement, encouraging us to move towards “knowing” our food once again–it’s source, it’s farming method, and it’s distribution.

Now, this whole local, organic thing is a pretty big fad right now (and I’m as guilty as any for being an evangelist for it–even though I’m also a weak practitioner), but O’Brien’s perspective is different. She is a former Wall Street analyst, and so she spends her time not trying to belittle or demonize businesses who have a legal responsibility to maximize profits for their shareholders. Nor does she try and show how this perspective on food is inherently “better” or more “ethical” or “moral” (even though I might think so).

Instead, she shows how our current food system is–literally–killing us. There’s no sensationalism. No partisan backhands. No sarcasm. No exaggeration or twisting of facts; just a simple telling of her story of transition from a “normal” mom to her views today.

Ultimately, she shows how changing our food system could actually be best for our nation, both economically and politically.

On a personal note: I applaud this video, and yet I still find myself not following its suggestions (even as I’ve watched and read similarly-minded “exposes“, books, and documentaries). Nothing has been enough yet to actually change my habits. My main concern isn’t necessarily money or sourcing. Rather, it’s time. It takes time to plan, shop, and cook with intentionality and thought (or so I think).

I’m sure many of the readers of this blog will agree with the principles laid out in this video. If so, I want to hear from you. No. Actually, I need to hear from you. I need help in this. What’s your story? Do you follow these principles, even a little bit? What has worked? What hasn’t? Any tips for a time-bound (and probbably, more realistically, just lazy) twenty-something looking to reform his eating habits? Sound off below.

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2 thoughts on “On “Real” Food: a TED Talk everyone should watch

  1. Pingback: Unethical Plants vs. Unethical Animals: what to eat? [OPEN MIC] | the long way home

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