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Chapter 8

GGR107H1 Chapter Notes - Chapter 8: Margarine, Calorie, The Control Group


Department
Geography
Course Code
GGR107H1
Professor
Sarah Wakefield
Chapter
8

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CHAPTER 8: WHAT IS NUTRITION?
8.1 WHAT DRIVES OUR FOOD CHOICES
During the course of one day, we make over 200 decisions about food from
What to eat
When to eat
How much to eat
How food is prepared
And even what plate to use
A multitude of interrelated factors affect your food choices, beginning with your personal preference
8.1.1 WHAT DRIVES OUR FOOD CHOICES
Research has found that taste is the most important consideration when it comes to making food choices
Most people prefer the taste of salts or sweet foods to some degree, which is influenced by our genetics
Children enjoy extremely sweet flavours
Adults enjoy subtle sweet flavours
Breast-fed babies whose mother ears a variety of foods, are more likely to embrace new foods as adults
Formula-fed babies are more tolerant to bitter or sour tastes by the age of 4-5
When fat is combined with sugar, such as a doughnut, our taste for that food is stronger
Texture also affects our liking of food. One may hate or like the following textures
Flaky
Tough
Crunch
Mealy
Creamy
Lumpy
Slippery (30% of adults dislike this texture)
8.2.1 CULTURE AND ENVIRONMENT
Culture and environment affect the food we enjoy eating and often influences what we put on our plates
Mexico: Corn
India: lentils, rice, legumes, vegetables
Native American: mutton, corn, vegetables, berries
China: rice
Environment also affects the food that we eat. Food that is available and accessible are more likely to be consumed
Individuals near coastal waters are more likely to eat seafood and other aquatic organisms than those in
landlocked areas

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Other choices influence what and how much we consume such as
Shape and size of plates and glassware
Packaging of food
Types and amounts of food visible
We are more likely to eat more food on larger plates, drink more in larger glasses, drink less in taller glassware
Environmental patterns also influence our eating habits
Lingering over food in dimmed conditions
Eating faster when everyone is finished
8.1.3 SOCIAL REASONS AND TRENDS
Eating is an important way to bond with each other.
An example is thanksgiving, where one is likely to eat more than any other Thursday in the year
Eating with others has shown to increase the size of the meal by 40%
Choosing to eat quickly in the campus cafeteria is not the best choice for healthy food, but it enables you to
socialize with classmates
Activities influence the decision of food as well
More pizzas are sold on Super Bowl Sunday than any day of the year
Moviegoers usually buy snacks such as popcorn and candy (more likely when with a group of friends)
Food choices are also affected by popular trends
Home cooks in the 1950’s bought frozen vegetables to provide healthy food faster
Today consumers pay a premium for fresh bagged vegetable that have been prewashed, peeled, sliced or diced
Organic food is also priced at a premium
5.1.4 WEIGHT CONCERNS, BODY IMAGE, AND HEALTH BENEFITS
Individuals may choose certain foods because they are perceived as being healthy, or avoid those associated with weight
gain or loss
Your perception of foods can be influenced by your current state of health
If you are overweight, you will be aware of the kilocalorie contents of food and avoid sugar/fat
The more aware you are on the effects of food on health, the more likely you will make an effort to improve you
eating habits
Americans are eating less food with trans-fats with the knowledge that they are unhealthy
Americans have been consuming functional foods to improve their health since the late 1920’s. Functional food includes
Whole foods (oats, bran)
GM foods with higher nutritive contents
Food fortified with phytochemicals (e.g. calcium fortified orange juice)

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8.1.5. ADVERTISING
Manufacturers spend $10 billion to $15 billion annually on food advertising
$700 million to market breakfast cereals, candy, and gum
$500 million to market soft drinks
Food companies spend these large sums of money for advertising to target young people
American children view up to 40,000 television commercials annually
40% of ads are related to sugary foods in between cartoons
Commercials of fruits and vegetables are rare, because they can easily be marketed
When milk consumption went down, marketers launched a campaigned called “Got Milk?” which was successful and raised
the consumption of milk by 1.5 billion pounds
8.1.6 TIME CONVENIENCE AND COST
When it comes to putting a meal together, time is a premium
In America, working women want to put meals together in less than 15 minutes
To accommodate this demand, more and more supermarkets are offering partially or prepared food
If chicken is on the menu, you could buy it uncooked or at the rotisserie where it is ready to be consumed
For reasons related to convenience, more and more people are eating out than they did a few decades ago
Americans spent 25% eating out a few decades ago
This has risen to 45% today
Fast food is cheap, but is taking a toll on the health of Americans. Risks include obesity, heart disease, etc..
Cheaper food doesn’t always mean fast food when healthy food is priced right people buy them
8.1.7. HABITS AND EMOTIONS
Daily routines and habits affect both when you eat and what you eat
It could be bowl of cereal with a glass of OJ for breakfast
Eggs and sausage with coffee for breakfast
Snacking in front of the television
Emotions also play a role in what you eat
Being happy, sad, stressed, or depressed can trigger eating or supress them
8.2. WHAT IS NUTRITION?
The science of nutrition is the study of food and the nutrients required to sustain life
It explores how food nourishes the body and affects health
The study of relationship between food and health began as early as 1600’s
Scurvy which was disease usually associated with sailors was found to be caused due to vitamin C deficiency
By 1900’s the concept of essential nutrients was widely accepted
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