Michael Polan explains the misconceptions of what constitutes a dietary meal. He carries out an education of individuals regarding their health and the factors that make the problem recurrent. He gives a discussion of replacement of foods by nutrients. In his explanation, the significance seems to be solely on consumers. However, it is a relevant issue to each member of the society. His primary goal is to emphasize the use of proper healthy nutrition. As one reads the essay, there is the realization that the author creates more problems than he gives solutions.
The information that he passes across include the technical terms, and the eating habits among college students that he deals with in the essay is ideal for young people. According to Parrish (1), the writer achieves his persuasion because of the style of writing that he uses. He explains the facts from their source. Among them are the discovery of nutrients and unequal substitution for food. He mentions governments and states that they are irresponsible because of the misunderstandings and misconceptions that they promote among the public. The factors support the persuasive nature of the article.
Nutritionism refers to the paradigm of the assumption that nutrients described by sciences are the ones that determine the value of food that people should eat. In explaining it, Scrinis (29) states that is the belief that the sum of vitamins, individual nutrients, and other components of food is the value of food. It is a concept that emerged following Polan’s publication of his article in 2007 (Scrinis 33). Another meaning of it is that it is the implication that the sole goal of eating is to promote health in the body. It is largely a pejorative term that implies that food is not only simple, but it is also harmful. Polan argues that the value of nutrition of food is “more than the sum of its parts” (Polan 7).
Polan (9) describes the French paradox as the epidemiological observation that people from France have low rates of coronary heart diseases (CHD), but their diets are full of fats that are saturated. It is the contradiction to the widespread belief that consumption of fats improves the risk of getting CHD. The paradox lies in the fact that while the French consume a high amount of saturated fats, they lack high rates of CHD. For example, Americans reduced their intake of fatty foods, but they continue to have high rates of heart diseases. Polan states that “the astounding variety of foods on offer in the supermarket shows that the number of fats in the diet is shrinking” (10). Being that Americans no longer consume a lot of fats, they are the ones that should have low rates of CHD. The contrast is factual because the French are the ones that intake high rates of saturated fats but they have low rates of the disease.
Nutritional science has limits in what it can tell us about diet because the assumptions that it makes are not as relevant as the society thinks. The article by Polan is appropriate, not only to college and university students, but the public because it questions the general beliefs regarding its diets and nutritional decisions, making persuasive arguments about what people should eat and what they should not. When he illustrates the French Paradox, he questions scientific findings of what is nutritional and what is not. The point that he makes is that what a person consumes is not essential. The imperative issue is how you drink it. The author summarizes his article in ten points. They include eating food, avoid food that has fewer health clams than others, avoid food that has unfamiliar ingredients, and stay away from the supermarket. He also argues that one must pay attention to healthy food, eat plants, eat like the French, cook for self, and eat like an omnivore.