News Column

What we eat - in pictures

June 2, 2014

Sarah Boseley,

This is fascinating, I think - although as much for what it does not tell us as what it does. It is a gallery from the photographers Peter Menzel and Faith D'Aluisio, who have travelled around the world taking pictures of people with the food they consume in a day, with calorie counts.

The characters range from the wife of a Masai chief, who eats 800 calories a day, to a truck driver in Illinois, who gets through 5,400 - and a couple of packets of cigarettes, it appears. He doesn't look in bad shape at the moment, but with the fries, the fags and the sedentary job, I guess he could be in for trouble.

What is odd, however, is the variation in the calorie content of people's diets. It's hard to figure out why some people are not much fatter and others much thinner than they appear to be. But maybe not all of them are pictured on a typical day. And I can't help remembering all those studies that have shown how people misreport what they eat and drink - either because they can't remember or because they feel somehow guilty. Our relationship with food is never less than complex.

Beware of the pop-up diet ads on this site, by the way!

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Source: Guardian Web

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