I recently watched a documentary about the food industry called Hungry for Change. If you’re interested in watching it after reading this post, you can buy it on Amazon, or watch it on Netflix. Here’s a clip from You Tube. I wanted to share some of the interesting points that I learned while watching.

Early in the movie, they state that about one-third of American women are “on a diet.” They further claim that this is because we aren’t eating food, but instead eating food-like products. They said sugar is the cocaine of the food world. Sometimes I’m leery when I hear such a bold statements and I roll my eyes and think “not another sugar-hating campaign.” I like sugar, it tastes good. But I continued to watch anyway because I once had a teacher that said even if the entire thing isn’t relevant, at least try to find a Golden Nugget. You know, that one burst of new inspiration that makes it all worth your time. And, I did find the Golden Nugget, which I’ll share with you in a minute. The movie peaked my interest when they said it’s not your fault that you’re fat, but instead, it’s the new food we eat that causes our body to store excess fat and save up for the prehistoric “winter” that never comes. Our bodies operate the way they always have, but our modern processed foods are completely different.

Another point that I found interesting was that they said you can eat 10,000 calories a day and still be hungry because you didn’t eat any nutrients. “We are overfed, yet starving to death at the same time.” Of course everyone says to lose weight you need to eat less and move more, but I like that this documentary took time to acknowledge that losing weight is also a mind game. “It’s what you eat, drink and think.” They explained that addiction is the biggest cause of obesity and people just don’t understand it. Obesity is the solution as opposed the problem.  People use food to solve their problems.  They went into further details about MSG, sugar and the infamous high fructose corn syrup and the effects that it has on your body. Some of it I knew, but some of it I didn’t. I never really thought about how the food industry intentionally creates products to make us addicted and buy more.

I thought about how people who are vegetarians, shop at the Whole Foods store and/or avoid sugar are often ostracized as seen as weird. Why?? For 200,000 years people ate unprocessed food, and only in recent times has processed sugary food been so readily available. Yet we call the people who eat organic food just like our ancestors ate strange. It made me realize that part of the reason I don’t want to give up certain processed and sugar foods is simply because I don’t want to be one of those weird Whole Foods shoppers, I want to be normal.

Then a college memory was triggered. For some bizarre reason I had a bet with one of my college friends that we could only eat vegetables for an entire week. We both did it, and at the end of the week, I felt great, lost weight, and my skin was absolutely glowing. It’s clear what kind of food my body likes, but my mind is more concerned about whether it’s too difficult, too expensive or if I’ll seem weird. We’re actually kind of brainwashed into believing that this new (100-year-old) way of eating is natural when in reality it’s anything but. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not ready to jump off into the vegan organic sugar-free world just yet. But this movie was a great eye opener as to how much of my thoughts and actions about food are what was taught by the food industry commercials and accepted as the norm, as opposed to what my body actually wants and needs to function.

If you’re open-minded I think Hungry for Change is a great way to see food from a different perspective. Oh! I almost forgot about the Golden Nugget. There was a lady in the movie, sorry I forgot her name, but she had an amazing affirmation statement. She said to say each day “I accept myself unconditionally as I am right now.” The “unconditional” part struck a chord with me. I like some parts about me, but not everything unconditionally. It made me wonder “why I don’t accept myself unconditionally?” This is the only me that I’m ever going to be so I might as well get to loving it. I wrote it on piece of paper and taped it on the mirror in my bathroom. I’ve been saying it every morning. It’s not all the way true just yet, but each day it gets a little easier to believe. I’m glad that someone recognizes that even with being healthy, your mind has to be right and that your actions will soon follow…

“I accept myself unconditionally as I am right now!”

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