Which Social Ingredient Is Poisoning Us?

by Bob Schwartz

Let’s say you eat a really big meal. A thousand dishes, each dish containing a thousand ingredients. That’s a million ingredients.

After eating the meal, you get sick. More sick than just from being very overstuffed. The doctor says that you have food poisoning. The question for you and the doctor: which ingredient or ingredients poisoned you?

That’s one way of looking at this social/cultural/political moment. There is increasingly a sense that we are poisoned, and that it might be something we ate or are still eating. How are we going to find out for sure? If we do find out, can we stop cooking with and eating that ingredient? Or is it just so tasty, so much a part of so many recipes, that we can’t easily stop or eliminate it?

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