Yesterday, a US-government appointed scientific panel released a 600-page report that will inform America’s new dietary guidelines. These guidelines only come out every five years, and they matter because they truly set the tone for how Americans eat: they’re used by doctors and nutritionists to guide patient care, by schools to plan kids’ lunches, and to calculate nutrition information on every food package you pick up, to name just a few areas of impact.
But this panel and their guidelines too often over-complicate what we know about healthy eating. They take a rather punitive approach to food, reducing it to its nutrient parts and emphasizing its relationship to obesity. Food is removed from the context of family and society and taken into the lab or clinic.
Listen to an intro by the author
Paperback: 496 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster; Reprint edition (January 6, 2015)
In The Big Fat Surprise, investigative journalist Nina Teicholz reveals the unthinkable: that everything we thought we knew about dietary fat is wrong. She documents how the low-fat nutrition advice of the past sixty years has amounted to a vast uncontrolled experiment on the entire population, with disastrous consequences for our health.
For decades, we have been told that the best possible diet involves cutting back on fat, especially saturated fat, and that if we are not getting healthier or thinner it must be because we are not trying hard enough. But what if the low-fat diet is itself the problem? What if the very foods we’ve been denying ourselves—the creamy cheeses, the sizzling steaks—are themselves the key to reversing the epidemics of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease?
In this captivating, vibrant, and convincing narrative, based on a nine-year-long investigation, Teicholz shows how the misinformation about saturated fats took hold in the scientific community and the public imagination, and how recent findings have overturned these beliefs. She explains why the Mediterranean Diet is not the healthiest, and how we might be replacing trans fats with something even worse. This startling history demonstrates how nutrition science has gotten it so wrong: how overzealous researchers, through a combination of ego, bias, and premature institutional consensus, have allowed dangerous misrepresentations to become dietary dogma.
With eye-opening scientific rigor, The Big Fat Surprise upends the conventional wisdom about all fats with the groundbreaking claim that more, not less, dietary fat—including saturated fat—is what leads to better health and wellness. Science shows that we have been needlessly avoiding meat, cheese, whole milk, and eggs for decades and that we can now, guilt-free, welcome these delicious foods back into our lives.
Find out who’s hijacking your health…
and how to reclaim it!
About the Filmmakers
Pedram Shojai, OMD, is the founder of Well.Org, the editor of BeMore! Magazine, the author of Rise and Shine, and the producer and director of the documentary films “Vitality” and “Origins.” It was when he ran a large medical practice treating patients with the same lifestyle-induced ailments again and again, that Dr. Shojai began his mission — to help people understand the intrinsic connection between their lifestyle, their health and the vitality of our planet. He works to preserve our natural world and wake us all up to our fullest potential.
Mark van Wijk is a filmmaker based in Cape Town, South Africa. He studied Photography at Port Elizabeth Technikon, specialising in travel. After 4 years of travel he then made a natural progression onto film and television.
“The great outdoors gives me energy – the earth and nature inspires me in my work and in my life! Respect for all is my only rule! People need to understand that they are actually a part of nature and my dream is for my work to bridge the divide that civilization and technology have created”
The message in the film – Origins – kept me inspired throughout the entire project. I am so happy and privileged to have been able to make this film with Pedram and I believe it carries a message that all of us need to understand and live towards!
Tamatem Ma’Amrine is a Moroccan dish of roasted tomatoes stuffed with albacore, capers, olives and preserved lemon..
Adapted from a recipe by Claudia Roden
Carve a lid out of the tomatoes and scoop out the insides as you would a jack-o’-lantern. Don’t let the walls get too thin, or the tomatoes will split while roasting. Turn the tomatoes upside down and let the water drain.
Meanwhile, flake apart US Pacific troll or line-caught albacore and toss gently in extra virgin olive oil with bits of roasted red pepper, coarsely chopped capers and black olives, thinly slivered preserved lemon and chopped flat-leaf parsley.
Season tuna mixture with cracked coriander, fennel and white sesame seeds and stuff into the tomatoes.
Drizzle with a little more olive oil and season with sea salt and cracked pepper. Roast in a 375 degree oven until slightly blackened, perhaps 30 minutes.
Serve warm or refrigerate and serve cold; a crisp salad goes well in either case.
This post is part of Food Renegade’s Fight Back Fridays
“GMO OMG could be the film that bridges the knowledge gap for hundreds of thousands of Americans and allows us to reach that tipping point..” — Yahoo! Voices
GMO OMG director and concerned father Jeremy Seifert is in search of answers. How do GMOs affect our children, the health of our planet, and our freedom of choice? And perhaps the ultimate question, which Seifert tests himself: is it even possible to reject the food system currently in place, or have we lost something we can’t gain back? These and other questions take Seifert on a journey from his family’s table to Haiti, Paris, Norway, and the lobby of agra-giant Monsanto, from which he is unceremoniously ejected. Along the way we gain insight into a question that is of growing concern to citizens the world over: what’s on your plate?