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The truth about Food

Food is any comestible substance that can be eaten with few or no significant negative health effects. Such a broad definition allows for food to be rich in nutrient or not rich at all. Almost all foods are harmful if too much is consumed; but taken in moderation, the benefits must greatly outweigh the hazards. Foods such as vegetables, breads, dairy, and meats are examples of foods that are good for us; on the other extreme, we have junk foods which supply us with few nutrients, and have been referred to as 'empty calories'.

Food is the main source of energy and of nutrition for animals, and is usually of animal or plant origin, although humans are also known to consume fungi in the form of mushrooms, and bacteria in the form of cheese and yogurt. In addition, giant kelps are protists popular in Japanese cuisine. The only remaining kingdom is Archaea, with no known esculent species as of this writing. Food and its style of consumption is embedded in culture, religion, and tradition. Many countries have a recognizable cuisine, a specific set of cooking traditions and practices.

Like all other animals, humans need food to maintain good health. Humans are omnivorous and can consume a wide variety of organisms. Food is traditionally obtained through farming, ranching, and fishing, with hunting, foraging and other methods of subsistence locally important for some populations, but minor for others. In the modern era in developed nations, food supply is increasingly dependent upon agriculture, industrial farming, aquaculture and fish farming techniques.

After the food is obtained, though some of it can be eaten without preparation, many foods undergo some form of preparation for reasons of safety, palatability, or flavor. At the simplest level this may involve washing, cutting, trimming or adding other foods or ingredients, such as spices. It may also involve mixing, heating or cooling, pressure cooking, fermentation, or combination with other food. Most food preparation takes place in a kitchen.

Other than just solids, food also consists of drinks. The word drink is primarily a verb, meaning to ingest liquids. As a noun, it refers to the liquid thus ingested. It is often used in a narrower sense to refer to alcoholic beverages (as both a verb and a noun). A drink specifically prepared for human consumption is called a beverage. Beverages almost always largely consist of water. Water is essential for living, significantly more so than food. Death will usually occur after 1 week without any liquids but humans have been known to survive some months without food.

The study of food is called food science. In English, the term food is often used metaphorically or figuratively, as in food for thought. In a broader sense, "food" can refer to anything ingested that provides energy or spare parts.

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