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The study of food and culture and the many factors affecting this topic is a topic that you can find some aspect of information on in almost any journal and database. More focused areas of study are foods, anthropology, sociology, medical science, botany, animal science, and demographics. Area focus depends upon the aspect you are studying of this topic. For example, if you are investigating the foods consumed in a specific country, you might investigate the historic animals and plants used as food, you might look at statistics for agriculture production, you might investigate dietary data, you might look at ethnic groups and their presence and contribution in a countries food habits. You might read books, look at journals, read newspapers, and explore government statistical sites.
How should you go about studying such a broad area? The following is ONLY a suggestion.
1. Select a database to explore (see suggested databases below). Choose one whose topic most closely seems to fit your focus.
2. Start off with simple words in searching databases first to get an idea of what exists. For example, you may be exploring "The Effect of Natives, Invaders and Immigrants on Mexico's Cuisine." You may choose terms such as "mexico native foods," "mexico indigenous food," "mexico invaders, mexico immigrants" to search on in a database. From looking through the results that come up from these initial searches, you will then get terms which may be more specific.
3. Look at the citations that the searches come up with and find these books and journals. If a journal appears to have a number of references, it might be useful to access the journal in the library or search the e-journals.
4. Additionally, it might be useful to search the journals mentioned in the "NUTR 216 Journal Websites" module and review the archives of past references. Databases often started in 1969 or 1970. It is critical to read the whole article to insure the content reflects an abstract or review.
Statistical data includes data posted from various governmental agencies.
Additionally, there are journal websites which have their journals archived. This gives you information by searching through the table of contents which may be useful and NEVER show up in the commercial databases. Some journals have started as early as 1888.