The Flow (Charts) Of Food & Decision Making

010509-flowcharts.jpg Over the last month or so, Top Cultured has been busy releasing a series of food flow charts that although lengthy are rather on track when it comes to the decision making process behind choosing certain foods. They've really left us with a slew of questions concerning our own choices and today, we're here to address them all.

If you could map out your thought process as you wander through your local grocer, would it look like the flow charts above? Top Cultured has created some serious flow charts mapping the decision making process behind choosing the food that best suits your current needs and tastes. You can check them all out here:

What Should I Eat: Candy Edition
Where Should I Eat?: Fast Food Edition
What To Eat?: Cereal Edition
What Should I Drink?: Beer Edition
What Should I Eat?: Frozen Aisle Edition
Where Should I Eat?: Chain Restaurant Edition

What really hit home after reading through each of their charts is the length of the food choosing process and the amount of questions asked before an item can be acquired. Though many of the things we purchase from our local grocer are different than their maps, the process in which they have detailed in great length, isn't wrong. Funny and maybe a bit stereotypical, but fairly spot-on none the less.

We found ourselves sitting back and wondering, do we put this much thought into the items, meals and food concepts we foster in our own home? We won't lie, there's been nights we've been tired, run down and found ourselves standing before the freezer section of quick-meals, running through some of the same thoughts as above, but what about on days when we have a little time?

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Is it a waste of time to have so many thoughts about ingredients or the process of cooking? Does that make food an unhealthy obsession? Or is it a respect to the ingredients themselves in doing so? More importantly, would we find ourselves enjoying a far greater level of happiness if we did in fact put this much thought behind ingredients, meals and their correspondence to our daily lives and time lines?

In general, we think "thinking", always leads to good, not harm. It kills our gut reaction that can lean towards larger portions or more carb loaded foods (which are hard to avoid in the Midwest--sometimes it feels as though everything comes with a side of biscuits and gravy). Thinking can really get to the heart of what you're craving and allow for the time and preparation of such items.

The goal is to always leave your table happy and healthy, so where does this leave you in the thought process behind food. Is yours as long as the ones listed above? Or are you more of a fly-by-the-sea-of-your-pants type person?

Leave us your thoughts below, on this fast-food-slow-food thinking process that can either cloud your view or make things more clear depending on your personality type.

Related: How Far Does Your Produce Travel?

(Images: Top Cultured and Flickr member Perfecto Insecto licensed for use by Creative Commons)

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Sarah Trover has lived all across the Midwest and currently calls the hot dog-laden city of Chicago home. She rides scooters and seeks out kitchens that make the best pie.

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