Soon after I began working on this review, I heard an interview with Michael Moss, the prize-winning journalist and author of Hooked: Food, Free Will, and How the Food Giants Exploit our Addictions (2021). Moss’s latest exposé claims to reveal how the processed food industry capitalizes upon consumers’ basic evolutionary instincts in order to make them dependent on harmful products. Moss spoke energetically and persuasively about the dubious research, development, and marketing practices that have long defined this industry, but he began to lose me as he returned again and again to his robust supply of definitive soundbites: “Addiction happens in the brain.” “Hunger happens in the brain.” “Sugar and fat hit the brain faster than drugs, cigarette smoke and alcohol.” The list goes on. Prior to reading Alissa Overend’s Shifting Food Facts: Dietary Discourse in a Post-Truth...

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