Thursday, December 5, 2013

movie review: hungry for change

Hungry for Change is a film made by the same people that made Food Matters, which I previously reviewed. Like the first one, I think this is a compelling documentary with a lot of salient points. Plus, I think it touches on a lot of great points about the diet industry - which is something a lot of food studies/clean eating resources forget about.

Diet and weight loss is an industry that brings in $60 billion a year. At the same time, 2/3 of all dieters regain more than they lose. So why do we keep pumping money into diet foods and weight loss programs when they clearly don't work, and we're sicker and more malnourished as a nation than ever before? 

This film delves into the chemical processes in your body that make you crave and retain fat (and sugar and salt). Which goes to explain why when the "no-fat" crazy gripped the nation, tons of people didn't lose weight - they just started eating carbs like crazy and then got addicted to sugar. We become habituated to the effects of things like sugar and caffeine over time - which isn't surprising, because they are drugs. The film notes that more people die from food related chronic disease (like cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes) than illegal drugs each year.

Hungry for Change spends a lot of time on the harm that we do ourselves when we make ourselves miserable dieting and don't give our body and minds what they need to be healthy. Dieting can trigger feelings of deprivation and desperation that aren't a part of a generally healthy lifestyle change. This film makes the compelling case that you're much better served by looking at your diet as a way to achieve health and balance and not as an enemy.

It did delve into JUICING IS AMAZING territory, as well as DETOXING IS AWESOME-ville, which induced my usual eye rolls. But if juicing gets people to stop eating Doritos and drinking Pepsi, I'm down.

All in all, this film was a good reminder of the most basic principles of healthy living - and that the benefits of eating clean are myriad, from whatever perspective you hold.

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