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Books

Book Review: Eat This, Not That!, Again!

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Fri, Sep 9, 2011 at 8:02 AM

click to enlarge You Choose
  • You Choose
Authors David Zinczenko and Matt Goulding are releasing another edition of Eat This Not That!. The 12th edition, we are told via a press release, with new "easy swaps to help consumers lose pounds fast!" (their emphasis, not ours). Are you ready?

In the Introduction, the book begins with (surprise!) diet magazine-worthy success stories complete with before-and-after photos, then gets straight down to recent chocolate-hazelnut lawsuit business with the "Nutella's hazelnut spread gets a hazing" section. Yes, the authors acknowledge that we all knew Nutella wasn't farmers market-fresh fare, but add that "we" (they) write "nutrition books for a living."

This is a nutrition book? Who knew.

The authors go on to mention the lawsuit against Nutella (In sum: A mom sued Nutella earlier this year after being supposedly outraged to learn Nutella is not -- surprise! -- nutritious): "Okay, so it's easy to smirk at knee-jerk lawsuits like this, but take a look at Nutella's website," say Zinczenko and Goulding. "It's rosily marketed as 'the original hazelnut spread' and touted as part of a balanced breakfast. But the first two ingredients are sugar and palm oil. By that standard, an ice cream cone could be considered part of a balanced breakfast, as long as you eat enough healthy food to 'balance' the junk you are consuming."

Um, this entire book is promoting junk -- yeah "better" junk, but still junk -- consumption. At the Olive Garden, you should, we are told, order the herb-grilled salmon, not grilled shrimp caprese (We actually recommend consulting Jonathan Gold on that one). At IHop, we are told to order a Belgian Waffle, not Cinn-A-Stack French Toast. That last one we agree with, simply as -- call us crazy -- we believe meals should never come with a trademarked name. Particularly breakfast.

In this edition, there is an Eat This, Not That! section for kids, too, here. So you can, we are told, "encourage a lifetime of healthy eating for your kids." We shall refrain from comment.

But hey, maybe we really should be feeling guilty for our regular 3 p.m. organic yogurt habit. Dannon Light & Fit gets an "eat this" in the book presumably because it is sweetened with artificial sweeteners (?) and thus low in calories -- Wallaby's gets a "don't eat" because it is 10 calories more than Siggi's skim-milk based version.

Call us crazy, but we just did Eat [That] Now.

[More from Jenn Garbee @eathistory + eathistory.com]

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