Jack Bobo is a food futurist and the Author of Why Smart People Make Bad Food Choices. In this episode we talk about the psychology of eating, some of the factors and habits that drive food choices and issues regarding our food system and sustainability.
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Cheryl McColgan Hey everyone, welcome back to The Heal Nourish Grow podcast. Today, I am joined by Jack Bobo, he is the author of "Why Smart People Make Bad Food Choices." I'm really excited to have him here. As you heard on his bio, he has such an interesting background with food and policy and psychology. So you know I'm interested in that because that's my background as well. So anyway, welcome Jack, if can you tell us a little bit about your book and how you got into all this, that would be wonderful?
Obesity Epidemic in America
Jack Bobo Great, well, thank you, thank you for having me on this show. Really excited and delighted to be here. Well, the book really came out of this question that I kept asking myself, how can it be at a moment in time when we know more about health and nutrition than we ever have in the history of the planet, we've never been more obese? As I'm sure you talk about all the time, 42 percent of Americans are obese, 75 percent are overweight or obese, the number is going to 50 percent if we don't change that trajectory. And so, the book was sort of my effort to look into how have things changed over time, looking at the psychology of food choices, how our brains and environment are driving the choices we have, and really what would it take to reshape our and redesign our food environment to make healthy choices the easy choice? Because I certainly don't feel like we should be struggling as hard as we are to be healthy. I mean, our grandparents, they were cooking with lard for goodness sake, [chuckle] and yet none of them were obese, so, clearly lots of things have changed. And how do we get back to that point where we can enjoy the food we eat, not feel so stressed about it?
Cheryl McColgan And when you were doing your deep dive into that for the book, what was it that you kind of found, Was there a predominant answer, did you find it to be a number of co-factors, what has surprised you the most after looking into this a little bit more?
Jack Bobo Well, I think as all of these things, it's complicated, and it's not one thing, it's a thousand things. And often when we're looking at new diets and other things, we're looking for something to fix the problem. And it isn't one thing, you know, it's each decision we make, how things are packaged, the food and the environment we're living in, but let me just give you one example. If we went back to the 1960s, there's a guy named David Wallerstein, who's sort of the guy who invented super sized portions....