7 Food Documentaries Everybody Needs to Watch

Get educated - live longer

Most of us spend a lot of time watching shows on TV or Netflix and Hulu, especially on weekends when there’s nothing else to do during this cold winter time. However, besides shows like the Crown, Stranger Things, Homeland, and the Walking Dead, there are many other things to watch. A vast selection of Netflix and TV programs allows you to learn by watching some interesting documentaries. That’s how you get a more detailed insight into a certain subject. For example, you can learn a lot about food and get motivated to start making healthier choices by watching food documentaries. Here are seven amazing documentaries about food and nutrition you should see ASAP.

1. Forks Over Knives (2011)

forks over knivesForks Over Knives is an American food documentary that explores why eating a plant-based diet is the best thing to do for optimal health and wellbeing. What makes this documentary stand out is that it’s not “preachy” and doesn’t aim to push you into ditching certain foods, it merely discusses why some foods are healthy, and others aren’t. According to the Cleveland.com, the documentary tells the story of Campbell, a nutritional scientist at the Cornell University, and Esselstyn, a retired surgeon from the Cleveland Clinic. It makes the evidence-based case for plant vegan diets that eliminate meat, fish, oil, dairy in favor of whole grains, fruits, and vegetables[1]. On the official FOK website, you can learn more about the meal plan, get recipes, and choose a preferred option to see the documentary either via download, DVD purchase or on Netflix[2].

2. Cooked (2016)

In the Cooked documentary, the acclaimed food writer Michael Pollan, cookedgives us a detailed insight into the four elements of nature (fire, water, air, and earth) and how they are represented in the history of the way we make and enjoy our food. The documentary has four episodes, and Pollan perfectly draws a unique connection between various cultures and how each nature element is celebrated in their cooking techniques. A major reason why you should see this docu-series is because Pollan describes how the bread-making process changed throughout the history and why so many people develop an allergy to gluten. The AV Club’s review says that Cooked excels with historical context and provides useful information not only about food but how humanity evolved[3]. You can see the documentary on Netflix.

3. Food Inc. (2008)

food incFood Inc. is one of those documentaries you, simply, must watch when you decide you want to learn more about nutrition and make some changes. The Gazette Review describes it as an eye-opening documentary whose subject is still relevant today, almost ten years after its release[4]. Food Inc. goes into how corporate farming in the US affects the animals, the environment, and consumers at the same time. It tells the story of inhumanity behind corporate farming, and even if you don’t agree with some things, it will still make you think about this subject.

4. Sugar Coated (2015)sugar coated

High sugar content in foods and sugar industry, in general, play a major role in the widespread of obesity and Sugar Coated discusses this in greater detail. The documentary addresses the politics surrounding the sugar industry and its claims that sugar isn’t dangerous. The authors of this documentary want the industry to start taking responsibility for America’s growing health issues. The Montreal Gazette reviewed the documentary and wrote that it offers a refreshing break from the bland TV-based approach[5].

5. Hungry for Change (2014)

hungry for changeHungry for Change gives a great insight in how commercial food is produced. The main goal of this documentary was to debunk common diet and weight loss myths. Also, it offered useful facts about foods we eat on a daily basis. Besides mentioning these facts and myths, Hungry for Change suggests a few practical advice on how to kick bad habits and choose healthier food. According to PsychCentral, the documentary explains the vicious cycle of processed food and how they’re affecting us, shares real-life transformation stories from people who were overweight/obese, and it teaches us to be more confident[6]. This 89-minute long documentary offers a lot, and it is a must-watch.

6. Food Matters (2008)Food Matters

The main idea that stretches across the Food Matters documentary is that over-industrialization of food production is harming our health. Authors, James Colquhoun and Laurentine ten Bosch were inspired to create this documentary after Colquhoun’s father got sick and diagnosed with anxiety, depression, and chronic fatigue syndrome. The Mother Nature Network explains that Food Matters clearly demonstrates the role of nutrition and importance of food in alternative medicine[7].

7. Super Size Me (2004)

super size meIf you love McDonald’s and other fast-food chains, this is the right documentary for you. In the documentary, Morgan Spurlock embarked on a 30-day McDonald’s-only challenge to show the damaging effects of fast food on your health. A review in the Guardian states that Super Size Me reminds of something that we quickly forget[8], how harmful fast food can be, and conveniently, soon after the documentary was released, McDonald’s canceled its super size option.

Conclusion

With the opportunity to watch different types of programs on TV and Netflix, it’s useful to watch food documentaries too and learn more about nutrition, alternative medicine, weight loss, and so on.

 

References

[1] Forks Over Knives’ documentary explores plant-based diet as prescription for diseases, http://www.cleveland.com/healthfit/index.ssf/2011/05/forks_over_knives_documentary.html

[2] ForksoverKnives.com https://www.forksoverknives.com/the-film/

[3] Netflix’s Cooked bites off more than it can chew, http://www.avclub.com/review/netflixs-cooked-bites-more-it-can-chew-232428

[4] Top 10 Documentaries on Netflix, http://gazettereview.com/2016/12/top-10-documentaries-netflix/

[5] Documentary: Sugar Coated is not all sweetness and light, http://montrealgazette.com/entertainment/movies/documentary-sugar-coated-is-not-all-sweetness-and-light

[6] Product Review: ‘Hungry for Change’ Documentary, http://blogs.psychcentral.com/your-mind/2013/01/product-review-hungry-for-change-documentary/

[7] Review of the independently funded film ‘Food Matters,’ http://www.mnn.com/food/healthy-eating/stories/review-of-the-independently-funded-film-food-matters

[8] Super Size Me, https://www.theguardian.com/film/News_Story/Critic_Review/Guardian_Film_of_the_week/0,4267,1300818,00.html

Victoria Vass

Victoria has been a health freak as long as she can remember. She loves writing and analyzing behaviors, which probably explains her master's degree in Behavioral Psychology.

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