#752 Food Rule #1: Eat Food

vs. Edible Foodlike Substances

Let’s continue the Food Rule fun with one more +1 on Michael Pollan’s classic little food manual.

Today we’ll explore Food Rule #1.

It’s deceptively simple.


Here it is:

Rule #1: Eat Food.

“Eat food”? That’s the best you got Michael Pollan? (Hah.)


Eat real food rather than all the stuff that LOOKS like food but technically isn’t really food.

Michael calls the stuff that makes up the bulk of the modern Western diet “edible foodlike substances.

Overconsumption of that stuff?

Well, that’s a primary root cause of a lot of what ails us these days.

As Michael puts it: “Eat food. These days this is easier said than done, especially when seventeen thousand new products show up in the supermarket each year, all vying for your food dollar. But most of these items don’t deserve to be called food—I call them edible foodlike substances. They’re highly processed concoctions designed by food scientists, consisting mostly of ingredients derived from corn and soy that no normal person keeps in the pantry, and they contain chemical additives with which the human body has not been long acquainted. Today much of the challenge of eating well comes down to choosing real food and avoiding these industrial novelties.

One more time…

Rule #1 is very simple: EAT FOOD.

Which leads us to his memorable, seven-word food philosophy: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.

Another way to look at it: If your great-grandmother didn’t eat it and your 3rd grader can’t pronounce the ingredients, YOU shouldn’t eat it. It really is that simple.

Eliminate the processed foods that have become “edible foodlike substances.

If we all just followed that ONE rule, we’d be doing pretty darn well.

That’s Today’s +1.

That and this.

The final Food Rule?

Rule #64: “Break the rules once in a while.” 🤓

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