May 11, 2009

Fast Food Nation

by Eric Schlosser

This is one of those books I find fascinating and disgusting at the same time. Schlosser digs out all kinds of facts and horror stories about what goes on in the making of fast food- everything from how the beef is processed to what goes on behind the scenes in fast food restaurants, and how -of course- corporate decisions are not in the best interest of consumers who end up putting the stuff into their stomachs. It's not just about burger joints either, but all kinds of processed foods, and how they have become so pervasive in American supermarkets. While the data information, stats and numbers could be a bit tedious for me, there's plenty of personal and collected anecdotes in here too. Fast Food Nation is a book that will make you think twice about getting a meal on the go- at least it did for me. Knowing at surface value that this kind of stuff isn't healthy for you is one thing, having specific nitty gritty dirty details about why is quite another.

Rating: 3/5                     270 pages, 2001

More opinions at:
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  1. I try hard not to eat processed food, but it's not always easy to do.

  2. Anonymous5/11/2009

    We read this book junior year for our segment on formulating arguments. Very interesting, but very disturbing. I still can't eat McDonalds.

  3. This book was so different than what I expected it to be. I thought more about my food choices after reading this book.

  4. I agree. We all know it's not good for us, but the details really drive that fact home!


  5. I hardly ever eat fast food, but have been known to occasionally (once a month at most) eat a quarter pound with cheese. maybe I should stay away from this book, since I have a feeling I wouldn't want to even have that burger afterwards!

  6. I haven't read this one, but I did see Supersize Me. That was disturbing enough for one life time. I rarely eat at McD's anymore and usually only in desperation. I'd rather have chocolate.

  7. I have been wanting to read this...yes fascinating and disgusting do go hand in hand often :)

  8. When I first started college, all the freshmen had to read this as part of a big group reading cohesion event at the start of the first semester. I think I blocked most of it out actually.

  9. This was a depressing read because when I read it back in 2004,I was laid off from my teaching job and working at Wendy's to make ends meet. Shortly after finishing this book, I fixed on the idea of Korea...whew...

  10. Wasn't there a movie on this? I remember watching something on a similar topic, but I can't remember the name.
    I stopped eating at KFC after I saw pics of where the chickens came from.

  11. This book does intrigue me, but I think I'm better off not knowing! I try to be picky about which fast food places I frequent (usually choosing Subway), but really--don't want to know! :) 3/5 isn't bad, though. You could probably use this for the non-fiction five challenge if you wanted to (it's NF, right?).

  12. I really want to read this, but at the same time I'm scared to! I actually don't eat fast food very often, but I bet I'd still be traumatized by all the details.

  13. Bermudaonion- I feel the same way.

    Jacketsandcovers- No kidding. My husb has a weakness for fast food, but I put my food down at McD's.

    Nan- I think this book prepped me a lot for when I later read Animal Vegetable, Miracle and Pollan's food books- heightening my awareness of where my food comes from and how it's made

    Lezlie- Well said!

    Stephanie- I was never big on eating fast food, but sometimes I just do have a craving for a juicy burger! Now I try to find a good burger joint, not settle for a fast food chain.

    BlackSheep- I saw that too. It was frightening.

    Bethany- What is it about us that makes us stare at car wrecks and read about how bad things are for us?

    Jenny- Thankfully, I've blocked a lot of it out, too (it's been three or four years since I read it). But I still feel the impact of its message.

    Bybee- Korea doesn't have McDonalds?

    A Hazra- I saw the Supersize Me movie, and I think there's been one made about Fast Food Nation, but not sure.

    Trish- It is non-fiction, but I can't use it for the challenge- I read it about four years ago! The one I'm reading now about dolphins is going to count, though.

    Nymeth- It's a good kind of traumatization to experience. I recommend the read.

  14. Yes, Korea has McDonalds. No Wendy's though...

  15. Sounds like a book that I'd rather not read. I'd rather live in my ignorance! :) That said, it does sound fascinating.

  16. Bybee- I always did like Wendy's better.

    Natasha- I agree. Some things are just better left unknown.


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