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Licensed Unlicensed Requires Authentication Published by De Gruyter Mouton June 21, 2016

Are nutrients also good to think?

Jesús Contreras Hernández and Joan Ribas Serra
From the journal Semiotica

Abstract

Since Lévi-Strauss’ declaration “good to think, good to eat,” the social sciences have supported the idea that foods first have to be edible for our minds and only subsequently physically digested by our organism. If so, then it is culture that creates the categories that we use to classify foods. But, with the process of nutrionalization, food is understood as a collection of biochemical nutrients that are necessary in order to achieve the balance needed to live a long and healthy life. The categories scientists use to classify our foods have changed considerably. This fact implies an important qualitative change in our perception of food and our diet in its totality. With food technology, nutrition and genetics food identification (identity?) escapes the reach of today’s citizens as members of each respective culture. In any case, even if our primary preoccupation seems to be exclusively nutrit ional, and today it is very easy to “modify” the foods we eat and create new combinations to “improve” our diet, we must not forget that those food habits that are damaging our health are also determined by sociocultural factors because when we “modify” the original composition of a food, it seems that we are acknowledging the importance of such sociocultural factors.

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Published Online: 2016-6-21
Published in Print: 2016-7-1

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