chapter  1
12 Pages

Introduction

WithJames A. Duke

If, instead of spraying our weeds, we ate the safe ones, we would save all that energy tied up in the manufacture and application of pesticides (U.S. farmers Spend an estimated $3 billion a year applying herbicides) and in the raising, processing, and shipping of more conventional foods. In this small book, I discuss the edibility of some of our more common weeds, many of which are quite nutritious and some of which have promising medicinal virtues as well. In their new Designer Food Program, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) is looking at some of these: burdock, garlic-mustard, watercress and other cresses, and wild garlic and other onion relatives, as cancer preventives or sources of cancer-preventive compounds. It seems appropriate in this first year of the final decade of the 20th century that the NCI is finally involved in looking for preventives for cancer. The return for taxpayer dollars should be greater there than in the search for the cure. The old wisdom still maintains! Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, and grains, and eat a wider variety … and …. All things in moderation! Even weed-eating or grazing!