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When Danish chef Thorsten Schmidt was asked to create a banquet in space, the endless tangle of restrictions helped him understand what really matters when it comes to food.

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Is there a correlation between your biome and your BMI? In a radical new book, “Why Diets Make Us Fat,” neuroscientist Sandra Aabodt sheds much-needed light on this tangled, cryptic relationship.

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We know surprisingly little about what we want to eat, and why. Researcher Brian Wansink has been leading thousands of studies to understand more.

Illustration by Andrea Turvey for TED.

Food feeds the soul. To the extent that we all eat food, and we all have souls, food is the single great unifier across cultures. But what feeds your soul?

Will the future of food look like the past?

Comfort food in space: the final frontier | ideas.ted.com | Illustration by John Holcroft.

The past, present and future of food in space — from astronaut ice cream to “Enchilasagna” on Mars.

Jamie Oliver. © Jamie Oliver Ltd, Photographer: Joe Sarah

Activist chef Jamie Oliver talks about the future of food.