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Top 12 Must-Read Foodie Books

Here are 12 must-read books for those who are interested in food, health, and sustainability:

1. The Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals by Michael Pollan – A fascinating investigation into the ways in which industrial, organic, and alternative foods are produced and distributed, and their social, moral, political, and economic implications.

2. Compassion by the Pound: The Economics of Farm Animal Welfare by F. Bailey Norwood and Jason L. Lusk – An exploration of ethical issues, the feasibility of various animal welfare measures, and what could be done to promote the health and happiness of farm animals.

3. In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto by Michael Pollan – Research-based answers to the question: What should I eat?

4. The End of Food: How the Food Industry Is Destroying Our Food Supply—And What You Can Do About It by Thomas Pawlick – An expose of the current food production system and why many so-called health foods are actually bad for you.

5. What to Eat by Marion Nestle – A respected nutritionist debunks false health claims made by large corporations, explains confusing nutrition labels, and provides the information required to make healthy food choices.

6. Food Inc.: A Participant Guide: How Industrial Food is Making Us Sicker, Fatter, and Poorer—And What You Can Do About It, Edited by Karl Weber – Essays by leading experts explain where our food comes from, how food information gets suppressed by powerful interests, and how we can make healthy and affordable food choices.

7. Food Politics: How the Food Industry Influences Nutrition and Health by Marion Nestle – An expose of the ways in which industry interests have shaped government nutrition recommendations, school food practices, and food marketing at the expense of health.

8. Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal by Eric Schlosser – A history of fast food’s rise to power; its exploitation young people, minorities, and the poor; and the obesity epidemic it has spawned.

9. Seeds of Deception: Exposing Industry and Government Lies About the Safety of the Genetically Engineered Foods You’re Eating by Jeffrey M. Smith – Information about the potential dangers of GMO foods and the ways in which industry interests have silenced GMO critics.

10. Organic, Inc.: Natural Foods and How They Grew by Samuel Fromartz ­– The story of organic food from its humble beginnings to its industrialization by a number of large producers, and what’s good and bad about the industry today.

11. Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life by Barbara Kingsolver – A beautifully written family’s journey from industrial food consumers to locavores who eat only what is grown in their own garden or produced nearby.

12. Farm City: The Education of an Urban Farmer by Novella Carpenter – The charming story of a woman’s quest to establish a working farm, complete with crops, pigs, chickens, ducks, and beehives, on a vacant lot in the middle of an urban area.

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