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Special Report

The Food Issue: The Science of Feast, Fuel and Farm

It started as fuel, became a passion, ignited a global crisis—and made us human

  • September 3, 2013

Is Obesity an Addiction?

New brain research is revealing why fats and sugars may be driving more and more people toward obesity

September 1, 2013 — Paul J. Kenny

Processed Food: A 2-Million-Year History

It is the dark force, we're told, behind the obesity epidemic, the death of the family farm and Tang. But humans have been “processing” food ever since we learned how to cook, preserve, ferment, freeze, dry or extract. Processed food has powered the evolution of the species, the expansion of empires, the exploration of space. Here are highlights

September 1, 2013 — Evelyn Kim
Science Reveals Why Calorie Counts Are All Wrong

Science Reveals Why Calorie Counts Are All Wrong

Digestion is far too messy a process to accurately convey in neat numbers. The counts on food labels can differ wildly from the calories you actually extract, for many reasons

September 1, 2013 — Rob Dunn
Microbes Help Grow Better Crops

Microbes Help Grow Better Crops

Enlisting bacteria and fungi from the soil to support crop plants is a promising alternative to the heavy use of fertilizer and pesticides

September 1, 2013 — Richard Conniff

The Truth about Genetically Modified Food

Proponents of genetically modified crops say the technology is the only way to feed a warming, increasingly populous world. Critics say we tamper with nature at our peril. Who is right?

September 1, 2013 — David H. Freedman