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Chew On This: Everything You Don't Want to Know about Fast Food

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

7 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

Think Before You Chew

McDonald's has become the most powerful, popular, and potent fast food chain in the world. Their ubiquitous symbol, the golden arches, is now more widely recognized than the Christian cross. McDonald's spends more money on advertising and marketing than any other brand ...
McDonald's has become the most powerful, popular, and potent fast food chain in the world. Their ubiquitous symbol, the golden arches, is now more widely recognized than the Christian cross. McDonald's spends more money on advertising and marketing than any other brand of food to ensure than each and every American (especially small children) not only recognize the golden arches, but also associate them with clean, cheap, convenient food and skinny, laughter-filled, satisfied eaters. Food is the most common and important thing we ever purchase, but most people never think (literally) about what they buy to put in their mouths. How many diet plans include ways to avoid "mindless eating"? The food we eat plainly becomes part of us as soon as it enters our bodies so why is it that we don't know much about it-especially when it comes to fast food? Why is it that parents meticulously worry and think about every aspect of their child's life except what they are buying them for dinner after the little league baseball game?

Eric Schlosser believes that when it comes to fast-food, there is a simple answer, "the companies that sell fast food don't want you to think about it. They don't want to know where it comes from or how it's made. They just want you to buy it" (3). His purpose for writing this book is to have open and honest documentation of the where's, how's and when's of fast food so that younger consumers (Chew on This is geared toward a younger audience whereas Fast Food Nation toward adults) can make educated food choices and know exactly what they are putting in their bodies. The answers aren't pretty, but they are painstakingly researched and written in an interesting, "gross-young-readers-out" style that will leave you wishing this book were in the fiction section.
"Ewww don't tell me, I don't want to know!" so says most fast food eaters when Chew on This or Fast Food Nation is mentioned. But, how many of those "not-want-to-knowers" would say those same words when a doctor was getting ready to explain what he was injecting into them or their child? Americans expect, and even demand, to be informed about almost every aspect of their lives from the new government health care proposal to every minuscule mineral in their child's Fred Flintstone Vitamin. Parents have the ability to keep in contact with their teenager at any given time via texting, calling, skyping, emailing, facebooking, myspacing, chatting, etc.-they even have the ability to trace the exact location of their child through a mobile GPS device. However, if the quadrants showed their teenager pulling into the local McDonald's, they would be oblivious to real physical safety of their equally unaware, still-growing and developing child. Chew on This will open your eyes and close your mouth to your daily fast food fix. Even though you might not want to know, the truth is that you need to know. Then, like in all other aspects of our lives, make an informed decision about eating that next box of "chicken" McNuggets or feeding them morsel by greasy, edible pasted, fried, frozen, reheated, hormoned, morsel to your child while she distractedly walks her latest Disney figurine across the porous playground table top.

posted by MsMillion on April 9, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

3 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

Seriously? Oh yeah, only fast food chains do these sorts of thin

Seriously? Oh yeah, only fast food chains do these sorts of things, not other restaurants or companies that supply food-meat- to people. I would use this book as an example of how we need to refine our critical thinking skills. This book has many great points, but the p...
Seriously? Oh yeah, only fast food chains do these sorts of things, not other restaurants or companies that supply food-meat- to people. I would use this book as an example of how we need to refine our critical thinking skills. This book has many great points, but the premise is oversimplified. The other things I find disturbing is that sit down restaurant food is often more unhealthy than some fast food. Just look at the nutrition information for a few regular sit down chain restaurants and see what I mean.

posted by 2884740 on January 28, 2014

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 26, 2009

    Great for all ages

    i totally recomand Chew On This for all ages. it is an awesome book! i got it for Christmas and i started reading it, now i take it with me everyday when i go to school!!! Now i tell all my friends and family to read it, and tell them how bad fast food really is. This book is very educational for people who love nonfiction books. I recomand this book for anyone who loves fast food, it will show them what it will do to them and what they do to their animals!!! :(

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  • Posted December 4, 2008

    chew on this

    chew on this was a great book were i picked up a lot of useful information from. it taught me a little about the wasy that these big time ccorprations work, like where thay open up new stores, how they cut costs on their products, like when they make unsanitatry living conditions for these terminal animals. what they also do is make reeally low wages for these workers or employees, well thats just a little of what i picked up while reading chew on this, agreat book.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 2, 2008

    great book

    Chew On This is about exploiting all of the things you thought you knew about fast food. There are really no main characters in the book because it talks about different things through the book. Another problem that Dr. Allgair finds in Yupik villages is called ¿baby bottle syndrome.¿ When mothers put soda or other sugary drinks in baby bottles, their children often fall asleep with the bottle in their mouth, creating a breeding ground for tooth decay. Baby bottle syndrome often causes the upper teeth to rot away into black nubs. This is a great book because it tells you the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. The only reason I wouldn¿t like the book is that it discouraged me from eating fast-food. This book is great for everyone older that 12 to read because anyone less that that would either not understand it or would get scared of ever eating fast food again. Additional information Title: Chew On This Name of author: Eric Schlosser & Charles Wilson Name of publisher: Houghton Mifflin Number of pages: 264 Genre: nonfiction

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 22, 2008

    A reviewer

    Reading this book was truly a positive experience for me because I had always heard about how bad the fast food industries have become and now I know for myself. I can honestly say I have not eaten, and don't plan on eating fast food anymore when I can help it since the moment I started reading this book. The authors of this book were able to hold my interest throughout the book very well because of the way the authors organized the factual information. It wasn't just a long monotonous boring list of bad facts about the fast food restaurants, but actually a story being told aobut where they all started, what they have become, what happens in the factories, how the food is made, and what the 'innocent' food does to hurt your body. This book also kept me reading because of how shocking it all was. I never knew how these restaurants could be changing our nation for the worse, and how the citizens of the United States and all over the world don't even realize what they are contributing to. For this book, I don't think I would change one thing about it. I havn't read any other books on this topic before, but ever since my language arts teacher assigned this book to me, it's really changed the way I see fast food restaurants now. I recently drove by a Mcdonalds restaurant and saw the big gold arches that had a sign on it saying-famous hamburgers. Billions sold everyday. I thought to myself about how all of the people around the world who were giving their money to these restaurants at that exact moment and don't even realize how they could be damaging their bodies and their nation. I also liked the back of the book and how it had topic discussions for groups to read the book together, urging people to spread the word of the book and really discuss the problems together. I believe that if enough people read it and wanted to make a difference, we could be able to do so. I would definitely recommend this book to my friends, family, or anyone for that matter. This could really teach people and help make things better. I think people would be shocked to find out this information so I definitely think it would be good for whoever is reading this book review at the moment to actually read it and spread the word, to really make a difference.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 18, 2007

    Fast Food Can You Stand It!

    Is fast food bad? After reading the book Chew On This you would never ask that question again. The book Chew On This is based on a variety of concerns people have for fast food restaurants as well as some fast food historical moments. The book explains how the burger was created as well as who the owners of McDonalds were. Aside from these cool interesting facts there is the gross factor. The book details the diseases of the mouth and stomach fast food can cause and how the operations to fix them can be dangerous. The book also explains how the food is made and the inconsideration the fast food companies have for people¿s traditions of religion. I definitely recommend this book because it was phenomenal and is enjoyable. As I was reading this book I found it was like eating a burger, it was so gross yet I could not stop reading for it was so addicting. This book takes you with it as if you were on a tour at a factory. It shows you the pictures and clearly describes the unknown details. The book talks about the corporations involved with fast food, such as the frozen french-fry industry. This book evaluates service like a critic and gives clear examples how. One way it is like a critic is that they are pointing out the health concerns. Another is that they compare the fast food restaurants to each other. The book also has qualities such as interesting facts, like the longer you have been eating that tastes bad the less you notice. The book uses an example of two babies one who has had a disgusting formula since it was very little and one baby who is just trying it. The baby who has had it longer does not notice the bad taste. This book has many other interesting facts and qualities that can help people with their knowledge of what is good and bad for them. This book is fantastic and the quicker it is read the faster we get rid of fast food.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 15, 2007

    LOVED THIS BOOK

    I got this book a week after it came out and loved it. I think everyone teenager should read it. The stories at the end are the best! and very inspirational

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 28, 2007

    Awesome Book for Teens

    This book really changed my life. I used to eat fast food a lot but when ive read this book i promised myself that i will never eat in a fast food restaurant ever again. It really gives you an excellent insite on everything fast food. I highly recomend this book to teens.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 10, 2007

    Great Book!

    This book is full of information on what happens to people when they eat fast food great to read for people that like fast food.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 17, 2007

    ballin

    totally recommended!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2006

    Fast Food Beware‼

    In Chew On This, Eric Schlosser gives a vivid detail of how fast food is made. Most certainly, a child should read this to prevent them from going to any fast food chains in the future. Because of how brutally the chickens are killed, I've become a minor vegetarian.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 10, 2006

    Great read!

    I love this book. You really learn what is in those yummy fries! And for vegetarians you may be in for a surprise when you read how your strawberry milkshake get's it's color.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 12, 2006

    Read this book and see what you're really eating when you visit a fast food restaurant.

    This book helped me discover how disgusting many fast food restaurants are. Learn what makes their french fries taste so delicious and other need-to-know things. Everybody should read this book and learn how their food from these restaurants is made and what it's made of.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 4, 2006

    BOOM

    Great book and very interesting kinda is like good eats from the cooking channel but in book form. Kids will be amazed after what they find out about what went down there stomach!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 5, 2006

    If you eat fast food please read this book!

    This is a balanced, fact-based account of the history & business practices of fast food corporations. Anyone who eats fast food should know how that Big Mac got from farm to drive thru, and then make their consumer choices accordingly. Particularly appalling is the way they market to young children. A fast read and definitely appropriate for middle schoolers on up.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 25, 2006

    OH SO DELISH!

    WOW! I was amazed with the content in this 'Fast-Food-Nation'-for-kids book. This book was disturbing, but in a good way. I truly had no idea what was going on inside those McGriddles and Big Macs, and what made the fries so, um, 'interesting'... I definatly recomend this book to parents of young children for a teaching method on healthy choices in those tempting fast food chains, and to teens or youngers interested in what they actually are consuming by going to these resturaunts. Haunting, but informative, Disturbing, but oh so enlightening!! A must read for just about all of teen-America concerning the obeseity crisis!

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    Posted December 19, 2010

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    Posted March 8, 2010

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    Posted November 27, 2010

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    Posted July 21, 2010

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    Posted August 9, 2013

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