Did you know the average American consumed 130 pounds of sugar in 2012? One soda a day increases a child’s risk of obesity by 60 percent? One in three Americans will have diabetes by the year 2050?
These facts were revealed in the 2014 documentary FED UP which provides an insightful look at food consumption, and how we’ve allowed the food industry to define “healthy eating.” The film is a must-see if you’re a parent with children who struggle with weight.
Directed, written, and produced by Stephanie Soechtig and narrated by Katie Couric, the 90-minute film showcases interviews with experts and pioneers in a variety of fields, while exploring the myth of “conventional wisdom,” such as “a calorie is a calorie,” and the sometimes damaging advice of “eat less and exercise more.”
Childhood Obesity: a Growing Epidemic
FED UP focuses on America's ever-growing childhood obesity epidemic via the lives of four overweight children.
We experience the determination, struggle, and pain in their heartbreaking tales as they try to lose weight following “conventional wisdom.” We feel the all-too-familiar disappointment in the stinging message of “your behavior is your fault” to the victims of this epidemic.
But the interviewees in the film rally to inform us that it’s not our fault—we can’t rely on human behavior when science has proven that hormones are what drive our behavior. They demonstrate how the food industry has successfully manipulated our hormones through unbelievably convenient, tasty, addictive, and, in my opinion, absolutely toxic processed food.
The Sugar-Free Challenge
This documentary concludes with a 10-day sugar-free challenge, motivating Americans to be responsible for their own health, to start cooking again, and to scrutinize the labels and health claims of food products.
As a cardiologist, I chose this career to help people regain their health—to seek to eliminate the very reason my career exists. Despite my best efforts, I continue to see the result of “conventional wisdom” in the progression of waistlines and metabolic disease in even the most disciplined patients.
Metabolic syndrome and other similar illnesses continue to grow in numbers and are literally killing this country—one misinformed American at a time. It’s time to reclaim our food choices; it’s time to reclaim our health!
Strive for higher fiber foods, identify your own sugar addiction and deal with it accordingly. The quality of the calories you consume will dictate the quantity of calories you consume. Just these simple tenants will help you on a path to better health.
Once you start down this path, I can guarantee that you’ll feel (and look) better. That could mean:
- Increased energy
- A decreased waistline
- Less depression
- Improved blood pressure, cholesterol and/or diabetes numbers
You owe it to yourself and your loved ones to learn more. Check out some of the many resources Lancaster General Health offers:
- Parents Guide to Healthy Eating & Activity for Children
- Healthy Weight Management Classes
- Healthy Cookbooks
- Blogs on our website
- Healthy Grocery Shopping Tours conducted by LG Health dietitians