The Junk Food Companion: The Complete Guide to Eating Badly by Eric Spitznagel

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Ingredients: junk food facts and fallacies; tips on fast-food etiquette; quotes from celebrated snackers; quizzes for the junk food challenged; the true story of why Cheez isn’t cheese; the wit and wisdom of Bazooka Joe; obscure facts from the archives of junk food history; and much more.

The Junk Food Companion is from Penguin Putnam but I just picked it up from a library book sale. I’m glad I did, it’s hilarious and interesting.

It’s filed under Popular Culture/Humor and the author states it’s a satire. So while it’s filled with true junk food facts, it’s also full of humour and satire.

I just MUST share some facts with you:

“The Life Savers company has received some unusual customer
requests for flavors, including cucumber and tobacco.”
– from Candy

“General Mills once considered making a cereal out of
– from Cereal chapter

“In 1997 a U.s. marshal shot a New York teenager for eating a
3 Musketeers candy bar. The marshal allegedly thought the candy was a gun.”

from Chocolate chapter

“The world’s most expensive coffee, at $130 a pound, is an
Indonesian brand called Kopi Luwak. The secret ingredient in Kopi Luwak is
insect poop.”
– from Coffee chapter

“Before appearing in a Christmas print ad for Coca-Cola in
1931, Santa Claus was typically portrayed as a tall, thin, hollow-cheeked man.”

– from Cola chapter

“Carrie White, named in the Guiness Book of World
Records as the world’s oldest person, ate mostly Fig Newtons.”
– from
Cookie chapter

“When a young Madonna Ciccone moved to New York City she
immediately applied for a position at a Dunkin’ Donuts. She got the job. Five
years later she had her first gold record.”
– from Donuts Chapter

“In 1997 a Dallas, Texas, police officer was suspended for
eating a McDonald’s chicken sandwich taken from a crashed car at the scene of an
– from Fast Food chapter

“Chewing gum can cause controlled expelling of intestinal gas
(otherwise known as farting).”
– from Gum chapter

“Fickle Pickle ice cream, a Michigan invention targeted at
pregnant women, was a commercial flop.”
– from Ice Cream chapter

“Jimmy Dewar, the man who invented Twinkies, ate two Twinkies
every day until his death in 1985.”
– from Unidentified Foods

That’s one quote from each chapter so you know what the chapters are. The Unidentifed Foods chapter also includes such foods as hotdogs, Spam and Cheez Whiz.

The book is really funny with a little bit of knowledge tucked in there. It’s great for anyone who loves junk food (like yours truly.)

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About Kathleen

I've been a nonfiction lover for as long as I can remember. I love children's nonfiction as well and love to share my knowledge and the books I gained them from, with the world. I wish more people would give nonfiction a chance.