Judith's Reviews > The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite

The End of Overeating by David A. Kessler
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's review
Nov 12, 2009

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The author is a former FDA commissioner, dean of Yale medical school, and currently a pediatrician. So he is extremely well informed and yet so down-to-earth that he commiserates with all of us who are tempted by sweet and salty junk foods, convenience foods, and fast foods. What I really liked about this book is that the author really investigates the chemical reasons behind the temptations and shows the reader that it's not completely our fault we tend to overeat the wrong kinds of food. The junk food industry, like the tobacco industry before it, spends all its time and resources thinking of ways to hook us into eating their products and worse, to never get complete satisfaction from it. Thus we keep returning to the food, like the addicts we are. It goes beyond salt, fat and sugar and involves things like making foods more soluble so we don't have to chew as much so that we eat faster and thus more. The author's research involved interviews with top executives at Frito-Lay and Chili's restaurant to name a couple, and it is amazing how candid these people were about the lack of nutritional value and the competition to attract more consumers. If you substituted just a few words, you could swear you were listening to top drug lords trying to make their drugs more addictive. And the whole advertising industry for these foods involves convincing the viewer that their lives will be enriched by eating these foods because the experience will be so much fun or will represent familial love. "nothin' says loving like something from the oven". Right. And that would be the industrial ovens at the Pillsbury factory?

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