Do you live on a farm? More so than at any point in history, your answer is probably “No.” So, you’ll have to just imagine what it would be like living in a village or on a farm where you grow your own food. You would probably be eating comfortably even if you didn’t have too many menu options each day. But what if suddenly the majority of your food came from supermarkets and restaurants? Each meal would become a complicated event full of financial, emotional, social, and even moral implications. Do you eat something delicious? Do you know about and approve of the corporation that sold you your meal? Are you simply trying to save money?
When diet becomes entangled with these other factors, we can easily lose our natural sense of what is healthy. We become flooded with choices and conflicting information. Obesity, diabetes, and other diet-related illnesses have become increasingly prevalent in our modern-supermarket society. Even though we have a natural desire to eat, we become sick when we eat too much or the wrong things. So how are we trying to adapt and maintain our health in spite of this over- whelming array of food options?
There is currently another transition occurring in our world and it is every bit as dramatic and influential as the supermarket revolution. It’s the information revolution. Information is a lot like food. Everyone knows that human beings have a natural desire to eat. Fewer people may be aware that we also have a natural desire to “consume” in- formation. And in the same way that we can get sick when our desire to eat is not managed based on healthy principles and practices, our desire to “consume” information can make us sick if not managed well.