The claim that consciousness is simply food rearranged can be placed into a historical perspective that crosses more than 70 years.
Historical perspective: (1944) What Is Life?
Indeed, in the case of higher animals we know the kind of orderliness they feed upon well enough, viz. the extremely well-ordered state of matter in more or less complicated organic compounds, which serve them as foodstuffs. After utilizing it they return it in a very much degraded form -not entirely degraded, however, for plants can still make use of it. (These, of course, have their most power supply of ‘negative entropy’ the sunlight.)
2012 Reprint: What is Life?: With Mind and Matter and Autobiographical Sketches (Canto Classics) with forward from 1991 by Roger Penrose
How often do we still hear that quantum effects can have little relevance in the study of biology, or even that we eat food in order to gain energy?
(2014) Max Tegmark
A conscious person is simply food rearranged.
My comment: Max Tegmark has arrived late with his claims about consciousness without making any claims that could be linked from the unconscious affects of odors on the effects of hormones and behavior. There is no need to link either conscious or unconscious affects of food odors to consciousness or to link pheromones to biologically-based cause and effect via a new state of matter. Tegmark and others need only look at the extant literature that links physics from chemistry to the conserved molecular mechanisms of biologically-based cause and effect via the innate immune system and supercoiled DNA.
Scientists discovered that the major developmental function of heterochromatin — a form of tight DNA packaging found in chromosomes — is likely the suppression of virus-like DNA elements known as transposons or ‘jumping genes,’ which can otherwise copy and paste themselves throughout the genome, potentially destroying important genes, and causing cancers and other diseases.
See the attempt to discuss conscious choice in the context of biophysically constrained energy-dependent RNA-mediated protein folding chemistry and chromatin remodeling linked to behavior without inventing a theory that consciousness could be a new state of matter on the FB page of Andrea Kuszewski
See also, another theory on consciousness. The Single-Neuron Theory: Closing in on the Neural Correlate of Consciousness
The notion that the brain as a whole is sentient is an illusion created by the exquisite organization of the individually conscious neurons. Despite appearances to the contrary, conscious behavior that seems to be the product of a single macroscopic mind is actually the integrated output of a chorus of microscopic minds, each associated with an individual neuron.
My comment: Is there a model for that?
See also: Hydrogen-atom energy in DNA base pairs