The No. 1 New York Times bestseller comes to television.
Eating is fun and essential to our survival. So why should we have to defend food? The reality is, our Western diet is ruining our health and our waistlines, and the barrage of conflicting dietary messages gives us nowhere to turn.

Best-selling author Michael Pollan believes it doesn’t have to be that hard. Just in time for all those New Year’s resolutions to eat better, KQED, PBS and Kikim Media bring you the broadcast premiere of In Defense of Food, the two-hour documentary based on Pollan’s #1 New York Times bestseller.

“Eat food.  Not a lot.  Mostly plants.” Michael Pollan’s seven-word solution might seem simple, but the journey to its discovery will take viewers around the world and deep into history. Travel to Tanzania, where members of the Hazda tribe still eat the way our ancestors did, and to France, where people enjoy better health despite the abundance of wine and cheese.

Along the way, Pollan shares scientific breakthroughs that have helped us understand the relationship between food and health, such as the mystery of breast milk, which is actually one-third indigestible.  Pollan also cuts through decades of misinformation about diet, such as Dr. John Harvey Kellogg’s idea that protein was bad for people and the “nutritionism” that led to products like vitamin-fortified Schlitz beer. 

What Pollan means by telling us to “eat food” is to eat what people ate before we became dependent on highly-processed products he calls “edible food-like substances.” Fortunately, simple changes can reverse the damage to our bodies and communities, and Pollan offers tools to help us counteract our tendency to overeat and our biological cravings for fat and sugar. He even addresses the holy grail of nutrition: getting kids to eat their veggies. 

Pollan is the John S. and James L. Knight Professor of Journalism at the University of California at Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism and an award-winning author. His previous work includes The Botany of Desire, which KQED and Kikim Media presented as a two-hour documentary in 2009. 

In Defense of Food is made possible by the National Science Foundation and PBS. Camp Fire will offer curriculum based on In Defense of Food in early 2016. Contact your local council or Camp Fire National Headquarters for more information.