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Webster 1913 Edition


Food

Food

,
Noun.
[OE.
fode
, AS.
fōda
; akin to Icel.
fæða
,
fæði
, Sw.
föda
, Dan. & LG.
föde
, OHG.
fatunga
, Gr.
πατεῖστηαι
to eat, and perh. to Skr.
pā
to protect, L.
pascere
to feed, pasture,
pabulum
food, E.
pasture
. √75. Cf.
Feed
,
Fodder
food,
Foster
to cherish.]
1.
What is fed upon; that which goes to support life by being received within, and assimilated by, the organism of an animal or a plant; nutriment; aliment; especially, what is eaten by animals for nourishment.
☞ In a physiological sense, true aliment is to be distinguished as that portion of the food which is capable of being digested and absorbed into the blood, thus furnishing nourishment, in distinction from the indigestible matter which passes out through the alimentary canal as fæces.
☞ Foods are divided into two main groups: nitrogenous, or proteid, foods, i.e., those which contain nitrogen, and nonnitrogenous, i.e., those which do not contain nitrogen. The latter group embraces the fats and carbohydrates, which collectively are sometimes termed heat producers or respiratory foods, since by oxidation in the body they especially subserve the production of heat. The proteids, on the other hand, are known as plastic foods or tissue formers, since no tissue can be formed without them. These latter terms, however, are misleading, since proteid foods may also give rise to heat both directly and indirectly, and the fats and carbohydrates are useful in other ways than in producing heat.
2.
Anything that instructs the intellect, excites the feelings, or molds habits of character; that which nourishes.
This may prove
food
to my displeasure.
Shakespeare
In this moment there is life and
food

For future years.
Wordsworth.
Food is often used adjectively or in self-explaining compounds, as in food fish or food-fish, food supply.
Syn. – Aliment; sustenance; nutriment; feed; fare; victuals; provisions; meat.

Food

,
Verb.
T.
To supply with food.
[Obs.]
Baret.

Webster 1828 Edition


Food

FOOD

,
Noun.
[See Feed.]
1.
In a general sense, whatever is eaten by animals for nourishment, and whatever supplies nutriment to plants.
2.
Meat; aliment; flesh or vegetables eaten for sustaining human life; victuals; provisions; whatever is or may be eaten for nourishment.
Feed me with food convenient for me. Prov. 30.
3.
Whatever supplies nourishment and growth to plants, as water, carbonic acid gas, &c. Manuring substances furnish plants with food.
4.
Something that sustains, nourishes and augments. Flattery is the food of vanity.

FOOD

,
Verb.
T.
To feed. [Not in use.]

Definition 2021


food

food

English

Noun

food (usually uncountable, plural foods)

  1. (uncountable) Any substance that can be consumed by living organisms, especially by eating, in order to sustain life.
    The innkeeper brought them food and drink.
    • 1922, Ben Travers, chapter 1, in A Cuckoo in the Nest:
      “[…] the awfully hearty sort of Christmas cards that people do send to other people that they don't know at all well. You know. The kind that have mottoes like
        Here's rattling good luck and roaring good cheer, / With lashings of food and great hogsheads of beer. […]”
    • 2013 June 29, A punch in the gut”, in The Economist, volume 407, number 8842, page 72-3:
      Mostly, the microbiome is beneficial. It helps with digestion and enables people to extract a lot more calories from their food than would otherwise be possible. Research over the past few years, however, has implicated it in diseases from atherosclerosis to asthma to autism.
  2. (countable) A foodstuff.
    • 2006, C Williams, J Buttriss, Improving the Fat Content of Foods (ISBN 1845691075), page 492:
      Variation and changes in the trans fatty acid content of different foods, especially in processed foods, further complicate such estimates.
  3. (uncountable, figuratively) Anything that nourishes or sustains.
    The man's inspiring speech gave us food for thought.
    Mozart and Bach are food for my soul.
    • (Can we date this quote?) William Shakespeare
      This may prove food to my displeasure.
    • (Can we date this quote?) William Wordsworth
      In this moment there is life and food / For future years.

Usage notes

  • Adjectives often applied to "food": raw, cooked, baked, fried, grilled, processed, healthy, unhealthy, wholesome, nutritious, safe, toxic, tainted, adulterated, tasty, delicious, fresh, stale, sweet, sour, spicy, exotic, marine.

Synonyms

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Related terms

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Statistics

Most common English words before 1923: respect · that's · Christian · #745: food · trying · states · wished

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