Food Documentary: Fed Up

As I will say with ALL documentaries, each film has a bias and will skew images and data to support their view that they are trying to get across in the film. I love watching documentaries because they give us a glimpse into the human condition and how we have dealt or view with a certain facet of our lives. But with such free-speech media, it is incredibly important to watch with a critical mind. It is up to us as individuals to do the research and find out what is true and what is not. 


“It’s not an easy transition to real food, but it starts locally. It starts really as locally as our fork. And everyone has a choice three times a day what they put on that thing.” – Dr. Mark Hyman, Chairman, Institute of Functional Medicine


Fed Up is a documentary that looks at the role of the American food industry as it pertains to the obesity epidemic, especially sugar. Fed Up does a great job at showing how political our food industry truly is. From the corporate money being given to public schools by private food companies to the government subsidies given to the agricultural sector that produces sugar provided by the very division of government that also tells us what our nutritional guidelines should be – it should raise some concern.

My favorite part of this documentary is that it moves past the age-old belief that every calorie is created equal and that being healthy means exercising out the calories you’ve taken in. The intellectual, emotional, and very blatantly political back stories of why America is one of the most obese countries in the world are woven into this documentary. Seeing the families shown in the film, the children fighting for their lives while their parents continue to feed these children the very food that is making them obese had me screaming at my TV. The worst part of it is – these parents don’t know any better.

It is clear we have a lack of education about TRUE nutrition and how to properly shop and prepare our own food. Michael Pollan, one of my favorite food writers, makes an appearance in this film and preaches the very thing that has been true in my own emotional food journey:

“The most important thing you can do – and it’s challenging for many people – is cook real food. You can forget about nutrients, you don’t have to worry about sugars, if you cook real food, your family will be eating much better.” 

They talk a LOT about politics in this movie and I want to wary viewers against getting lost in that. The filmmakers include a very concerning comparison to what happened in this country with tobacco and how we were able to successfully steer that health issue with government action. Someone can easily make the argument that we don’t want the government telling us what to eat (of course, I don’t want them to either), however when we’re on a brink of some serious health and economic conditions because of the food industry that the government has absolutely taken a role in to get us here – it’s time for change.

But remember – change starts with you, not waiting on the government. It starts with education, it starts with you changing your thoughts and habits and expanding that change. To your family, your community, your city, your state and this country to get back on track.

One of the first things I do after watching a documentary is go right to Google to see the other side of the bias or fact-checking for what was provided in the documentary. I’m including a few links that I believe to be an important accompaniment to this film written by credible authors:

Take the facts and the film together, use them to create the necessary change in your life that will generate the best possible you.