April 15, 2019

Thoughtful Tuesdays – Don’t Believe Everything You Hear - The Truth Behind False Claims

Can we, or should we, believe everything we hear and read in the media?

I recently came upon a fascinating book called The Fear of Food: A History Of Why We Worry About What We Eat written by author and professor of history, Harvey Levenstein, which I thought would be interesting to discuss on our Thoughtful Tuesday series.

Starting from the 1980s all the way to the early 2000s, The Fear of Food takes us on a historical journey of how our perception of food and our way of eating has been shaped [perhaps manipulated] by false truths.

“In Fear of Food Levenstein reveals the people and interests who have created and exploited these worries, causing an extraordinary number of Americans to allow fear to trump pleasure in dictating their food choices…”

The book reveals, one after another, people and organizations that the American public thought could trusted as reliable sources of information, and were wrong.

Like what kinds of “reliable” sources? – widely circulated magazines and publications like the New York Times, established medical journals & scientific research organizations, doctors and popular figures in the media, and even health authorities and federal government publications. The big shots.

What were the motivations behind these false claims? Sometimes the sharing of misinformation spawned from a lack of knowledge and pure ignorance, but too many times it was motivated by personal gain. Self promotion weighed heavily into the spreading of false information.

This book mentions instance after instance where poorly researched ideas and ungrounded hunches were advertised to the American Public as 100% true, without blinking an eye. Many of these “truths” were later proven by science to be flabby in evidence and even flat out false, but these rumors had already infiltrated and impacted the mass public’s thoughts and habits.

While the "few" benefited with fame and money from these misguided “truths,” it costed the American Public. These false claims not only damaged our joyful relationship with food and eating; we the consumers ended up investing a lot of money in products that over-promised and under-performed.

You might be wondering how this affects us, the American consumers of today? And how does this relate to clean living?

Part II –  Don’t Believe Everything You Hear – Diet & Skincare Fads 

Wishing you a BEAUTY-Full Day!


All images © 2019 Grace Song Photography

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