Why You Eat What You Eat

The Science Behind Our Relationship with Food

Rachel Herz, PhD (Author)

 

An eye-opening exploration of the psychology of eating in today’s unprecedented North American pantry of abundance, access, and excess.

In Why You Eat What You Eat, acclaimed neuroscientist Rachel Herz examines the sensory, psychological, neuroscientific, and physiological factors that influence our eating habits. Herz, who’s been praised for her “ability to cite and explain academic studies in a conversational manner” (Washington Post), uncovers the fascinating and surprising facts that influence food consumption—such as why bringing reusable bags to the grocery store encourages us to buy more treats, how our beliefs can affect how many calories we burn, why TV influences how much we eat, and how what we see and hear changes how food tastes—and reveals useful techniques for improving our experience of food, such as how aromas can help curb cravings and tips on how to resist repeated trips to the buffet table.

Why You Eat What You Eat presents our relationship to food as a complicated recipe, whose ingredients—taste, personality, and emotions—combine to make eating a potent and pleasurable experience. Herz weaves curious findings and compelling facts into a narrative that tackles important questions, revealing how psychology, neurology, and physiology shape our relationship with food, and how food alters the relationship we have with ourselves and each other.

Book Details

  • Hardcover
  • Forthcoming December 2017
  • ISBN 978-0-393-24331-4
  • 6 × 8.3 in / 368 pages
  • Sales Territory: Worldwide

Endorsements & Reviews

“Eating can be a pleasure or a compulsion, and it can fatten, daze, energize, sicken, or kill some of us—but not others. Rachel Herz deftly and charmingly explains the latest science on the mysteries and paradoxes of this eternally fascinating human pastime.” — Steven Pinker, author of How the Mind Works and The Better Angels of Our Nature

“Rachel Herz…reveals how our minds and emotions influence taste, and vice versa, helping explain why there is such a thing as bacon-scented underwear, why grapefruit aroma suppresses appetite and why loud noise enhances tomato flavor. Your plate, and your skivvies, may never look the same.” — Florence Williams, author of The Nature Fix

“Continuously fascinating…Rachel Herz sets new standards in helping readers deal with the vast range of problems that beset our eating habits.” — Gordon Shepherd, author of Neurogastronomy

“This engaging and accessible account by a leading neuroscientist has something for everyone.” — Rachel Laudan, author of Cuisine and Empire

“There are so many reasons, besides being hungry, that we eat the food we do. Rachel Herz writes clearly and evocatively about the science behind these choices, ones dictated by all of our senses.” — Molly Birnbaum, author of Season to Taste

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