I came across the Food Choices movie trailer when I was browsing the list of suggested documentaries to watch on Apple TV. I was surprised to find the filmmaker asking the same questions I have been asking myself for a long time. Food is so essential to us, yet we are so poorly advised on our nutrition. Why are doctors not better trained on nutrition information? How can we be better informed on the inaccurate health promises the corporate sector create to try to sell us products?
As mentioned in the movie, we live in a time in which we are bombarded with conflicting information about foods, diets and supplements. With social media, different opinions are continually being thrown out there, which confuses people even more. So how can we know which foods are good for us and which foods can potentially promote diseases?
Unlike many other movies of the segment, this documentary explores the impact that our food choices have on our health, our wellbeing, and on the health of our planet and the other living beings we share this world. The story is told from the perspective of the filmmaker Michael Siewierski, who went on a three-year journey, interviewing leading plant-based doctors, nutritionists and athletes to review the myths and facts behind fad diets and food choices.
Right at the start, the movie questions: What is the best diet for the human species? According to the guest speakers, it is one consisting of four main groups – fruits, whole grains, vegetables and legumes. I couldn’t agree more because since I fully adopted a plant-based whole foods diet, I have never felt so good.
We all know that plant-based foods are the healthier option, yet we all struggle to live plant-based. The thing is, we have to make choices in our lives every day. And with regards to food, most of the times we are not even thinking about what we are actually consuming. How many times I complained about not feeling well, feeling bloated or being a little bit overweight, lacking energy, etc. I was opting to eat foods that made me feel that way just because they taste nice.
Since I found out I was allergic to gluten, dairy, eggs, vinegar and other many things, my understanding of food and nutrition has changed significantly. I never thought about food the way I feel about it now. I never used to read food labels or pay attention to other components that are added to the list of ingredients. Emulsifiers, stabilisers, preservatives – I knew they added these things to preserve the foods and its consistency, but I have never thought that it could be bad for me.
It is only when you lose something that you truly give value to what you have. With my health, it was no different. Every morning when I woke up with my eyes swollen or my nose blocked with dry, hard crusts of god-knows-what, all I wanted, was to feel good again. I consulted so many doctors and specialists before finding out that the foods I was eating were causing these symptoms. It was just when I cut everything from my diet that was causing my body to react, that I got better.
I know that this is very personal but I strongly I believe that we need to put more time into making more informed decisions about our health. There were parts of the movie I didn’t agree with, such as when they say that whole foods are accessible to everyone or some misconceptions that is easy to transition to a plant-based healthy diet. But overall, this is a good documentary to watch if you have questions about plant-based diet as it addresses the most common concerns around proteins, minerals and vitamins.
I agree with them when they say that with so many options we have available for us today, there is no reason for us to eat animals because it is not essential for our survival like it was thousands of years ago. But not everyone can afford this choice. There are so many people in this world that are food insecure and all they want is to survive. The same way, transitioning to a plant-based diet is not easy without the assistance of a nutritionist or a dietitian. I personally had many issues with lack of vitamins and minerals because of the limited food choices I had due to my allergies. And also, I later found out that I had leaky gut, which will be a topic for another blog.
If you have watched Food Choices, I would love to hear what your thoughts are in the comments below. If you haven’t, check out the trailer below. The movie is available on Netflix and other platforms if that interests you.