I recently watched the movie Hungry for a Change, which I found on Netflix.
The basic premise of this documentary is it discusses secrets from all of these different industries (food, diet, weight-loss, advertising) that are used to keep consumers using their products and believing the lies they put into the media.
“As much as 2/3rds of individuals who are on a diet regain MORE weight than when they started.” -UCLA
The people that talk during this movie are not only health professionals, authors and doctors, but many of them have had a history of being overweight/obese, having poor eating habits or had bad perceptions of how or what to eat. These are real stories, not those fake weight loss stories you see on those quick weight loss products infomercials, like Zantrex.
The average American consumes 150+ pounds of sugar/sweeteners each year, according to the USDA. That is like some people eating their body weight in sugar annually!!
In the documentary they talk about how when humans were in the stage of hunting and gathering, our bodies got used to putting on fat because there was a food shortage. Our bodies are preparing for the winter months. But nowadays, we have an abundance of food in our society, yet our bodies still crave fat and sugar. We aren’t consuming the right fats and everything we eat is high in calories. They brought up the point that in countries where their main food sources are from homegrown produce and meat, they are getting better nutrition with lower calories, but in America where we have 50 different types of sugary cereal and an entire aisle dedicated to soda, we are in-taking more calories, but not the most nutritious calories. There is a great difference between calories and nutrition. You can be in-taking enough 2200 calories, which is a normal amount of a adults, but they are “empty” calories.
“68% of American adults are either overweight or obese.” -The Journal of the American Medicine Association
Even though many Americans may not be starving, the cells and bodies could be starving because they are not consuming what nutrients the body really needs, like vitamins and minerals. All they consume is highly processed and fatty foods. Our bodies crave proper nutrients, but if a person keeps eating the wrong foods, they will continue to eat the wrong things because their body is looking for those vitamins. They will always be hungry. You might be getting fed, but your body isn’t.
Another point that was brought up was about how the manufacturer’s main goal isn’t always to give you a healthy product. They need to sell a product that looks appetizing and will be shelf stable so that way the stores and the manufacturer don’t lose money. If that means telling a few lies and not being truthful on their label, then so be it.
“It is not fat that makes you fat. It’s sugar that makes you fat” -Dr. Christiane Northrup (I agree with this, but fat isn’t totally guilt free either…..)
What I thought was really great about this movie was that they really harped on the fact that diets are temporary and they don’t work. Eating healthy is NOT a diet, it is a lifestyle. Don’t think of changing your eating habits as a diet. When changing your dietary habits, think of it as improving your quality of life and developing new habits.
In summation, this documentary covers a variety of different topics/areas like the psychology behind food, addiction, how America’s lifestyle is related to the rate of obesity, health related diseases, how the food manufacturers think, additives (listed and not listed) in foods, stress and food, the chemical alteration of foods, the affects of food marketing/advertising on consumers and foods that are appropriate for detoxing the body (and no, its not the Master Cleanse!).
If I had a dollar for every time someone made a comparison of food to some sort of drug (cocaine, smoking) or alcohol, I would have like 60 dollars!! But I think they are right. Food is right up there with becoming addiction alongside cocaine, alcohol and smoking. In our world, food is becoming a drug.
I also liked the fact that they interviewed people who have higher education in nutrition, but was disappointed none had an RD, LDN behind their name.
I won’t give to much away, but you should really watch it for yourself, and maybe recommend it to a friend! I give in 3 1/2 out of 4 apples!
I liked the message behind the movie, but I also think that there needs to be a bigger change than just with ourselves. Food companies and marketing companies are just as much of the problem as our eating habits are to ourselves. We need a makeover.
Watch the official trailer below.
(Trailer is from Food Matters production. Credit goes to them)
Just a movie to get you thinkin’….
P.S. Happy first official day of spring!!