10. Unexamined Food Is Not Worth Eating M.Gale Smith


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10. Unexamined Food Is Not Worth Eating M.Gale Smith

  1. 1. Unexamined Food Is Not Worth Eating: Food Literacy As the Foundation for Food and Nutrition Courses M. Gale Smith , Ph. D., University of British Columbia
  2. 2. <ul><li>The Public Is Bombarded With Confusing Often Contradictory Nutrition Advice </li></ul>Why Food Literacy? <ul><li>Nutrition advice is confusing. Scientists have difficulty deriving clear guidelines because a study of an individual nutrient fails to produce an understanding of what happens to it when mixed with other nutrients in the body. (Nestle, 2007) </li></ul>
  3. 3. <ul><li>The Health Crisis Created by Dramatic Increases in Overweight and Obesity </li></ul>Why Examine Food? “ Without societal changes, a substantial and steadily rising proportion of adults will succumb to the medical complications of obesity; indeed the medical burden of obesity already threatens to overwhelm health services.” WHO April 17, 2004
  4. 4. <ul><li>We Live In An Obesogenic Environment </li></ul>Why Examine Food? <ul><li>In 2002 US government spent $48 million to promote nutrition and health for kids. </li></ul><ul><li>Food industry spent $2.7 billion </li></ul><ul><li>(56 times gov’t amount) on advertising </li></ul><ul><li>McDonald’s spent $ 1.3 billion </li></ul><ul><li>on advertising </li></ul>
  5. 5. <ul><li>Distancing And Commodification Of Food </li></ul>Why Examine Food? <ul><li>We have become “industrial eaters” (Vaines,1999; Berry, 1990), “food dumb” (Orr, 1995), “mindless eaters” ( Wansink, 2006) </li></ul><ul><li>When food, in the minds of eaters, is no longer associated with farming and with the land, then the eaters are suffering a kind of cultural amnesia that is misleading and dangerous.” (Wendall Berry, 1990, Pleasures of Eating,np). </li></ul>
  6. 6. <ul><li>Cultural Loss </li></ul>Why Food Literacy? <ul><li>“ Food is not just what we eat. It is an expression of who we are, how we live and the world we inhabit.” ( Mark Kurlansky, The food chains that link us. TIME, Canadian Edition, July 30-August 6, 2007) </li></ul>
  7. 7. <ul><li>Food Safety </li></ul>Why Examine Food? <ul><ul><ul><li>Two-thirds of Canadians say they are </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>worried about the safety of their food and an </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>even greater proportion are willing to pay </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>higher prices if it means imports will face </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>increased screening and tighter inspections, </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>reveals a new poll conducted for CanWest </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>News Service. (Vancouver Sun, 09/08/07) </li></ul></ul></ul>
  8. 8. <ul><ul><ul><li>Loss of Food Preparation Skills </li></ul></ul></ul>Why Food Literacy? <ul><ul><ul><li>The British watch more food and cookery programmes than ever before, but as a nation, we have never cooked less. If we want to be healthy, we have to learn to cook. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The (London) Independent, Jan 23, 2006 by RAYMOND BLANC </li></ul></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Why Food Literacy? <ul><li>Loss of Food Preparation Skills </li></ul>
  10. 10. <ul><li>Loss of Bio-diversity and Sustainability Issues </li></ul>Why Examine Food? <ul><li>Our personal health is inextricably bound up with the health of the entire food web. (Pollen, 2007) </li></ul>
  11. 11. Why Food Literacy? <ul><li>Rise in Food Insecurity </li></ul><ul><li>Food Security  - the right to food so that all people at all times, have both physical and economic access to enough food for an active, healthy life </li></ul><ul><li>Food Sovereignty - the right of peoples to determine their own food and agricultural policies </li></ul>
  12. 12. Why Food Literacy? NUTRITIONAL ILLITERACY There's sex education, why not food education? Sep 22, 2007 04:30 AM FoodShare is mounting a campaign to include food literacy in the curriculum for elementary and secondary schools.
  13. 13. What is Food Literacy? <ul><li>FOOD + </li></ul><ul><li>the study of food systems, foods and drinks, and their nutrients and other constituents; and of their interactions within and between all relevant biological, social and environmental systems. (The Giessen DeclarationUnion of Nutritional Sciences and the World Health Organization 2005 p. 784) </li></ul><ul><li>LITERACY </li></ul><ul><li>literacy Is an active phenomenon, deeply linked to personal and cultural identity. It is more than the ability to read and write. It is an individual’s capacity to put those skills to work in shaping the course of his or her life. </li></ul><ul><li>Friere (1992) </li></ul>
  14. 14. <ul><li>‘ functional Food literacy’ - some basic factual information on nutrition and healthy eating and food preparation skills. </li></ul><ul><li>In Home Economics classes this would include: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Re-skilling - teaching basic food purchasing, preparation, storage skills </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Activities that show students that how they eat determines how the world is used </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Participating in a school garden </li></ul></ul></ul>Components of Food Literacy
  15. 15. <ul><li>‘ Life world Food Literacy’- the world of lived experience </li></ul><ul><li>In Home Economics classes what would this include opportunities for students to explore and share: </li></ul><ul><li>- their own life experience - growing, obtaining, preparing, experiencing food by themselves and with others; social/cultural/spiritual significance of foods </li></ul><ul><li>- the life experience of others who are close to food (e.g., food producers, food transformers, locally and globally) </li></ul><ul><li>- opportunities to emphasize with others </li></ul>Components of Food Literacy
  16. 16. <ul><li>‘ Interactive/interpretive Food literacy’- the development of personal/interpersonal skills in a supportive environment to explore meanings and significance of food </li></ul><ul><li>In Home Economics classes this would include </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Reading food labels </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Determining points of view and value positions in nutrition and food communication </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Exploring cultural norms </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Cooperative learning activities </li></ul></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Simulated activities (community kitchens, family meals, special events, etc.) </li></ul></ul></ul></ul>Components of Food Literacy
  17. 17. <ul><li>‘ narrative food literacy’ - stories, yours, mine, ours </li></ul><ul><li>In Home Economics classes this would include </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>- using storytelling and narratives to explore the meanings of food </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>- exploring stories and creating new stories of growing, acquiring, preparing, using, and celebrating food across generations, within and between cultures, and in the various places we live </li></ul></ul></ul>Components of Food Literacy
  18. 18. <ul><li>‘ Critical Food Literacy’ - cognitive skills for evaluating and taking effective individual, social and political action </li></ul><ul><li>In Home Economics classes this would include </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Examining micro- and macro- food environments </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Studying social justice issues </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Developing critical thinking skills and abilities </li></ul></ul>Components of Food Literacy
  19. 19. Why Food Literacy? <ul><li>The goal of public health interventions around food … must be to create a society that helps children, adults, families and communities develop healthy relationships to food. </li></ul><ul><li>(Dr. P.Kendall, Food, Health and Well-Being in British Columbia., Provincial Health Officer’s Annual Report 2005) </li></ul>