FOOD AND TELEVISION: YOU NEED MORE BALANCE.

Eating is a necessity, but good food is also a pleasure. The cult of food and flavors is one of the characteristic social elements of our national, regional and local identity. The kitchen is also a tasty dish for the small screen. But with the passage of time, the fixed gaze on the dishes has become less and less cultural and more and more commercial. Today cooking is a transversal topic in the many programs that offer recipes live (“Cotto e mangiato”, “I menu di Benedetta”), in competitions between famous or aspiring chefs (“La prova del cuoco”, “Masterchef”) and even in the news headlines. Many food experts, television critics, psychologists and dieticians believe that the small screen is bad for food when it talks badly or too much, when it clumsily displays it or, worse still, when it wastes it. It would certainly be desirable to have greater regard for the television representation of food consumption, especially in a historical phase such as the present one in which in many homes it is difficult to put a meal on the table twice a day, not to mention hundreds of millions of people who in the world suffer from hunger on a daily basis. The programs of the culinary genre try to attract the attention of the spectators by resorting more and more often to excess; respond to this law of the audience – as well as the vainglory of the protagonists – the blatant gestures of the famous chefs who, dissatisfied with how a student has prepared the assigned recipe, take the dish ready and throw it in the bin. There are even so-called “real-tv” programs in which the challenge is to eat as much greasy and heavy food as possible. Unfortunately, we are used to these excesses, which are strictly inherent to the spectacular nature of the television medium and It will certainly not be the theatrical gesture of a tele-cook in the mood for cabaret that will make us forget that food is the fruit of the earth and the work of man, that we learn a healthy and balanced diet at home and not on TV, that the disproportion between wasted food and what many cannot afford is growing. If, then, food education found some more space in the television schedules, we certainly would not mind. It seems that it is especially the youngest who need education in the correct relationship with nutrition: recent data from the World Health Organization attest to the increase in the frequency of eating disorders among middle and high school children. It is probably still possible to educate children and young people – but also adults – to a balanced diet, to help them correct incorrect behaviors. It is a commitment that must face not only the need to satisfy a primary need, but also the influence of a complex system of psychological, social and cultural factors that together determine the dietary attitude and that find an all too effective kick drum in the media. .

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Autore:

Acquilia Guido

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