Mike Thelin, co-founder of Feast Portland and food writer extraordinaire, recently spoke at a TEDx conference on the importance of food in today’s culture. Thelin manages to make a convincing case that American food culture extends way beyond McDonald’s, citing prolific American chefs who have amalgamated international flavors into their cooking styles. He goes on to discuss how food is can be both a powerful unifier and a source of division, while also noting that food is about passions and convictions—thus making it more akin to a religion. Perhaps the best part of the talk is his list of “food religions,” which includes everything from Lard-Core Enthusiasts to Radical Vegans to our personal favorite, Lacto-Pesco-Whatever-Tarians.

[via Eater]