Foraging for meals on TikTok with Alexis Nikole Nelson : NPR

This comic, illustrated by LA Johnson, is impressed by an interview from TED Radio Hour’s episode The meals Connection.

For forager Alexis Nikole Nelson, who has a extremely regarded TikTok (@alexisnikole) with over 4 million followers, there’s one factor soul-nourishing about connecting collectively with your meals. Her movies are all about her foraging adventures — discovering cool vegetation, instructing people all about them after which using them to cook dinner amazingly scrumptious dishes. And after dealing with an consuming dysfunction and cultural stigma, she found that foraging was the method whereby to fall again in love with meals.


Page 1: Hi! I'm Alexis and I'm a forager. Which is a very fun way of saying I eat plants that do not belong to me. And I teach other people how to do the same thing.

LA Johnson/NPR

Page 2: When I walk into natural spaces, I see wonder. It's like Disney World, but plants, and way cheaper food.

LA Johnson/NPR


Page 3: I remember gardening with my mother at our house ... well, I probably wasn't helping at all ... but she pointed to a patch of grass that looked different than all the other grass.


Page 4: I break it, and suddenly the air is perfumed with garlic. Mom: You know how we cook with onions? You can cook with this, too. (Warning! If you tell a 5 year old this, they will go around breaking plants in your yard and smelling them!!to smell them!)


Page 5: My dad is excellent in the kitchen, and my mom in the garden, so I grew up with this. I'm very lucky to grow up as a black kid with black parents who are outdoorsy, because there has been this cultural separation between black folks and the outdoors.


Page 6: If you look back at history, at the diets of people who were enslaved, the way they beefed up their food rations was with hunting, trapping, fishing and foraging. But after slavery ended, new laws said you couldn't reap the benefits of the land unless you owned it.


Page 7: In the 20th century, foraging became taboo because the way to show off your wealth was by going to the grocery store. So a lot of this knowledge has been lost. I am just one of a myriad of people working to get that knowledge back.


Page 8: Many of us have a fraught relationship with food. A lot of that is societal pressure and how processed food is. I grew up overweight, pressured to eat less. I had an eating disorder. Food was the enemy.


Page 9: Foraging was the way that I fell back in love with food. It brought me joy and a connection to place.


Page 10: I believe caring about what you're nourishing your body with is soul-nourishing. Happy foraging, don't die!*

LA Johnson/NPR

* Please observe: If performed incorrectly, foraging can pose extreme risks. these who decide to pursue foraging ought to conduct thorough evaluation from a quantity of credible sources, search the advice of specialists, and practice warning.

This half of TED Radio Hour was produced by Katie Monteleone and edited by Sanaz Meshkinpour. Fiona Geiran contributed to the evaluation and digital manufacturing of this piece. you will have the flexibility to observe us on Twitter @TEDRadioHour and piece of email us at [email protected].



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