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Upending the conventional wisdom of why we gain weight and how to lose it, Fed Up unearths a dirty secret of the American food industry-far more of us get sick from what we eat than anyone has previously realized. Filmmaker Stephanie Soechtig and TV journalist Katie Couric lead us through this potent exposé that uncovers why-despite media attention, the public's fascination with appearance, and government policies to combat childhood obesity-generations of American children will now live shorter lives than their parents did. Written by
Sundance Film Festival
An Expose on the U.S. Food Industry and What Is Making Us Sick
Eye-opening! I love the way this film's message comes through in an intellectual and impactful way. This documentary tackles the issue of childhood obesity and follows the lives of kids across America. In between, we learn that everything we know about losing weight is wrong and that the content in our food products is a lie.
I want you to find any processed food product and look on the nutrition label. You will find that sugar does not have a percent daily value. All the other ingredients do. Why not sugar? Because, "80% out of the 600,000 food products sold in the country have added sugar and since 1995 the government has provided over eight billion dollars in subsides for corn based sweeteners." Revealing these surprising facts was no easy feat however, director Stephanie Soechtig brilliantly shows the struggle that all kids go through as they battle obesity. The half a dozen kids they follow through their physical and, more important, emotional pain - are amazing. We see them living different lives but dealing with the same obstacles. Their everyday struggles prove this film's theory. Many doctors, authors and, even presidents, are interviewed. Each has their say in the issue and all have wise words. The animation showing graphs, pie charts and ratings are clever. Mixed in with the informative, stock footage of news and food commercials showing the history of obesity, make this an exciting and insightful film.
I was blown away by Maggie Valentine's story. This beautiful girl is going through the heartache of trying to control her weight. She works everyday to release weight but, in the end, it's futile. To see her tears, frustration and sadness is unbearable to watch.
The message in this film is, "Change the food industry!" Being overweight is not entirely a personal fault. Our processed foods are a huge cause of the obesity rate in America. Food companies continue to grow bigger and stronger. Thus, we need to change the way we eat. We need to stop putting gasoline on to the fire. It's not easy. As Margo Wootan says, "Healthy eating is like swimming up stream. If you want to eat better you have to work hard against the food environment." The interview with David Allison, PH.D, Director of the Nutrition Obesity Research Center, is both tragic and funny. Allison has repeatedly taken research money from Coke, Pepsi and America Beverage Association. Asked about sugary beverages, David says, "one question you might ask is 'weather sugary beverages contribute more calories than other foods'" The interviewer asks, "Do they?" David replies, "It's a good question but I don't think the evidence is quite clear." The interviewer asks, "What is the science behind that?" David replies, "The ideal study might be to require people to (he stumbles) Ah, let me start again on that. Let me get my thoughts together..." Allison can't even form words. This made me chuckle because he can't even devise a logical explanation.
I give this 5 out of 5 stars and recommend this to 6- to 18-year-olds. Kids need to be aware of what's in the food they eat and learn how to make better choices.
Reviewed by Keefer B., KIDS FIRST! Film Critic. For more reviews go to kidsfirst dot org
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