The “Food Babe” Blogger Who’s Warned Millions Of Readers About “Toxins” In Food Is Apparently A Fake Who’s Making A Lot Of Stuff Up

The Food Babe Way
The Food Babe Way

Vani Hari is a food activist who goes by the moniker Food Babe. She passionately campaigns against toxins and chemicals in food. To date, she has campaigned against over 600 food products in four years, declaring them unsafe for consumption.

facebook.com/thefoodbabe
facebook.com/thefoodbabe

Hari has built a massive following of over a million fans, was named one of the Most Influential People on the Internet by Time, and wrote a New York Times Bestseller.

But over the course of Hari’s four years as Food Babe, numerous scientists and health experts have begun to question her. Their main complaints are that she has no specific expertise in food and that she amasses readership by making people unnecessarily afraid of “innocuous ingredients by pulling them out of context.”

foodbabe.com
foodbabe.com

Yesterday, Yvette d’Entremont, also known as Science Babe, published a scathing, 2,500 word takedown of Food Babe on Gawker. d’Entremont is “an analytical chemist with a background in forensics and toxicology…science writer, and public speaker” who runs scibabe.com.

Screen Shot 2015-04-07 at 3.44.08 PM

In the Gawker piece, Science Babe takes issue with Hari’s tendency to declare any difficult-to-pronounce ingredient a “toxin” or “poison.” One of Hari’s maxims is “If a third grader can’t pronounce it, don’t eat it.”

Shutterstock
Shutterstock

d’Entremont points out that everything you eat has an ingredient you can’t pronounce—but that doesn’t make it unsafe. If you’re still unsure, do you feel suspicious of chemicals such as dihydrogen monoxide and acetic acid? Well, dihydrogen monoxide is otherwise known as water and acetic acid is otherwise known as vinegar.

Karen Roe
Karen Roe

Instead, Science Babe’s rule is—”Don’t base your diet on the pronunciation skills of an eight-year-old.”

facebook.com/sciencebabe
facebook.com/sciencebabe

d’Entremont discusses one of Food Babe’s most infamous posts – a bizarre article about air travel, which Food Babe deleted from her site. It said that because “pilots control the airflow” in airplanes, they give themselves the best air in the cockpit. It also warned that sometimes, the air in airplanes can get up to 50% nitrogen (!)—but what she didn’t mention is that the air we breathe every day is 78% nitrogen!

Screen Shot 2015-04-07 at 3.46.11 PM

The Wikipedia article on the air we breathe gives the 78% figure in its fourth sentence.

Screen Shot 2015-04-07 at 12.51.10 PM

Hari claims in the same article that airliners spray their passengers with pesticides before getting on the airplane.

13668990945_ecbffbb627_k

The Gawker piece also describes Hari’s campaign against the Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Latte, which condemned it for having a toxic dose of sugar at 50g per serving. At the same time, however, Food Babe was endorsing Suja—a juice product—to her readers on her website, which has 42g of sugar and comes with a warning that it is not suitable for diabetics.

Miranda Celeste Hale
Miranda Celeste Hale

d’Entremont also cites Hari encouraging readers to lie about having food allergies to the waitstaff at restaurants, which could diminish the seriousness with which waitstaff treat special food requests of customers who actually have allergies to food.

Shutterstock
Shutterstock

These issues, as well as many others, are just a few that have led numerous experts to speculate that Hari outright makes shit up with no scientific evidence for her claims.

Screen Shot 2015-04-07 at 3.50.13 PM

But Food Babe has a long history of responding to criticism by claiming her expert critics are racist, sexist, or are protecting the food industry. These experts include “the director for Science and Society at McGill University, a Yale-educated neurologist and contributor to the Skeptics Guide to the Universe podcast, and… the horticultural chair at the University of Florida.”

foodbabe.com
foodbabe.com

She also seems to banish anyone who disagrees with her. Readers have been banned from Hari’s Facebook page for simply asking for qualifications and “pointing out that water was a chemical.” The Facebook page Banned by Food Babe has over 7,000 members.

Screen Shot 2015-04-07 at 3.55.27 PM

Meanwhile, Science Babe has already been getting death threats and threats of physical harm by Hari’s fans for writing the Gawker piece.

Screen Shot 2015-04-07 at 1.04.25 PM

Food Babe has since responded to the Gawker article, writing in part that it “is another sign that the food and chemical companies are scared to death of consumer activism and will do anything to prevent the truth from coming out.”

Go read the case against Food Babe over at Gawker—and then check out her response.

TC mark

Related

More From Thought Catalog

  • http://prairiecalifornian.com/the-food-babe-way-is-not-sustainable/ The Food Babe Way is Not Sustainable - Prairie CalifornianPrairie Californian

    […] she stands for. It didn’t take long before outlets like Cosmo, Elle Magazine, Vox, and even the Thought Catalog jumped on the bandwagon exposing the Food Babe for who she really is. Now calling out the Food Babe […]

  • https://thoughtcatalog.com/emily-madriga/2017/09/heres-what-really-goes-into-those-flat-tummy-instagram-posts/ Here’s What Really Goes Into Those ‘Flat Tummy’ Instagram Posts | Thought Catalog

    […] by the product’s marketing team and copy/pasted by McKenzie into her Instagram. Considering the entire idea of a ‘detox’ has been throughly debunked, it’s insane to think how these people are making a living off of something so […]

  • https://tubepilot.pw/heres-what-really-goes-into-those-flat-tummy-tea-instagram-posts/ Heres What Really Goes Into Those Flat Tummy Tea Instagram Posts | TubePilot

    […] by the product’s marketing team and copy/pasted by McKenzie into her Instagram. Considering the entire idea of a ‘detox’ has been throughly debunked, it’s insane to think how these people are making a living off of something so […]

  • https://smartemail1.eu/heres-what-really-goes-into-those-flat-tummy-tea-instagram-posts/ Heres What Really Goes Into Those Flat Tummy Tea Instagram Posts | Just Smart

    […] by the product’s marketing team and copy/pasted by McKenzie into her Instagram. Considering the entire idea of a ‘detox’ has been throughly debunked, it’s insane to think how these people are making a living off of something so […]

  • http://celebtrends.net/2017/10/12/heres-what-really-goes-into-those-flat-tummy-tea-instagram-posts/ Heres What Really Goes Into Those Flat Tummy Tea Instagram Posts | Celeb Trends

    […] by the product’s marketing team and copy/pasted by McKenzie into her Instagram. Considering the entire idea of a ‘detox’ has been throughly debunked, it’s insane to think how these people are making a living off of something so […]

blog comments powered by Disqus