In Sunday’s Dallas Morning News, syndicated columnist and consumer choice crusader Jacob Sullum profiles one of the Center for Consumer Freedom’s new heroes — professor Barry Glassner, whose new book The Gospel of Food takes a jackhammer to the sloppy science, culinary pretension, and outright condescension motivating the nation’s nutrition nags. Sullum runs down Glassner’s assessment of some of the food cops’ favorite punching bags, including:
Calorie counts: "Some of us see eating as something we get to do, a privilege and source of joy. Others view eating as something they have to do."
Fast food restaurants: "Where else, for a few bucks, can a person of modest means get the complete, tripartite American meal (meat, potatoes and vegetable), in a clean setting, with toys and diversions for the kids thrown in at no extra charge?”
The nation’s waistline: "As near as I can tell, not a single published study demonstrates that heart disease among the overweight and moderately obese results from their heft rather than from other factors that contribute to both obesity and heart disease."
Sullum gets in a few punches of his own, too, including a viciously accurate assessment of Center for Science in the Public Interest food-scold-in-chief Michael Jacobson:
The cadaverous Mr. Jacobson, who looks as if he is conducting a life extension experiment involving extreme calorie restriction, routinely reduces the dining experience to numbers indicating nutritional assets and liabilities, treating pleasure as, at best, an afterthought …
Mr. Glassner appreciates food in all its amazing variety and is not willing to deny what his palate tells him for the sake of fashion or ideology. As a guide to what’s worth eating, I’d take him over Michael Jacobson any day.