Forks Over Knives
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What has happened to us? Despite the most advanced medical technology in the world, we are sicker than ever by nearly every measure.
Two out of every three of us are overweight. Cases of diabetes are exploding, especially amongst our younger population. About half of us are taking at least one prescription drug. Major medical operations have become routine, helping to drive health care costs to astronomical levels. Heart disease, cancer and stroke are the country's three leading causes of death, even though billions are spent each year to "battle" these very conditions. Millions suffer from a host of other degenerative diseases.
Could it be there's a single solution to all of these problems? A solution so comprehensive but so utterly straightforward, that it's mind-boggling that more of us haven't taken it seriously?
FORKS OVER KNIVES
examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of the so-called "diseases of affluence" that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed foods. The major storyline in the film traces the personal journeys of a pair of pioneering yet under-appreciated researchers, Dr. T. Colin Campbell and Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn.
Dr. Campbell, a nutritional scientist at Cornell University, was concerned in the late 1960's with producing "high quality" animal protein to bring to the poor and malnourished areas of the third world. While in the Philippines, he made a life-changing discovery: the country's wealthier children, who were consuming relatively high amounts of animal-based foods, were much more likely to get liver cancer. Dr. Esselstyn, a top surgeon and head of the Breast Cancer Task Force at the world-renowned Cleveland Clinic, found that many of the diseases he routinely treated were virtually unknown in parts of the world where animal-based foods were rarely consumed.
These discoveries inspired Campbell and Esselstyn, who didn't know each other yet, to conduct several groundbreaking studies. One of them took place in China and is still among the most comprehensive health-related investigations ever undertaken. Their research led them to a startling conclusion: degenerative diseases like heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and even several forms of cancer, could almost always be prevented - and in many cases reversed - by adopting a whole foods, plant-based diet. Despite the profound implications of their findings, their work has remained relatively unknown to the public. The filmmakers travel with Drs. Campbell and Esselstyn on their separate but similar paths, from their childhood farms where they both produced "nature's perfect food"; to China and Cleveland, where they explored ideas that challenged the established thinking and shook their own core beliefs.
The idea of food as medicine is put to the test. Throughout the film, cameras follow "reality patients" who have chronic conditions from heart disease to diabetes. Doctors teach these patients how to adopt a whole foods plant-based diet as the primary approach to treat their ailments - while the challenges and triumphs of their journeys are revealed.
FORKS OVER KNIVES utilizes state of the art 3-D graphics and rare archival footage. The film features leading experts on health, examines the question "why we don't know", and tackles the issue of diet and disease in a way that will have people talking for years.
FORKS OVER KNIVES was filmed all over the U.S., in Canada and China.
DVD INCLUDES CLOSED CAPTIONING, AND ENGLISH AND SPANISH SUBTITLES
"A Film That Can Save Your Life." --Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun Times
"Convincing, Radical and Politically Volatile." --John Anderson, Variety
"Great Movie." --Mark Bittman, New York Times Columnist
"A Great Film." --Sanjay Gupta, MD, CNN chief medical correspondent
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Top customer reviews
I am continuing to reduce my weight, have lowered my cholesterol significantly to healthy levels, and have returned to perfect glucose levels (92-100 fasting) mostly following the diet outlined in the video, and my multiple doctors all tell me I'm better off, now that I'm following this lifestyle (diet AND EXERCISE).
If you don't believe vegetarian/vegan diet, you'll be able to make enough excuses to continue with your current meat/dairy diet and lifestyle and not notice any problems for years, but around age 40-45, it will begin to catch up, and I hope you will remember the messages this video presents and reconsider. Better to avoid creating the problems, but if not, it's never too late to change for the better, and the diet proposed in this video is a good start.
These topics just can't be emphasized enough. Responsibility for the health of our society is not a one-sided thing, responsibility lies in many areas, from our parents and schools up to the food industry, health care industry and our government. I did not agree with 100% of what was said, maybe 95%. I am not a vegan, was for a couple of years, it didn't suit me. That's a choice we all have to make for ourselves. Eating meat is not a necessity in today's diet, we know of many other foods now that contain plenty of protein. I do believe eating meat comes with risks and also responsibilities. I choose to only eat meat once or twice a week. I attempt to eat only that which has been raised and made available by humane means. If it was all gone tomorrow, I could be vegan again. I would not starve and I would still have a variety of foods to choose from. The biggest help for our animals, our planet and our health is getting the correct information out there, over and over and over. It has to become ubiquitous and prolific. This film has good information on an important topic.
We were completely blown away by the information it provided and decided we would quit meat and dairy cold turkey and switch to a plant based diet. What's the worse that could happen, right? If we didn't feel good, we could always switch back. So we committed to a one month trial.
Three months later, we are still sticking to our new plant strong diet and the results have been nothing short of amazing. I cannot even begin to express to you how much better we feel. We have more energy, my mental clarity has increased to levels I didn't know I was capable of experiencing, we sleep better, and we have each lost weight....my husband is down 22 lbs so far and I am down 9 lbs. The mid-day slumps I used to experience are also now completely gone. I no longer need a nap to help me get through the day.
My husband works in law enforcement and is required to go for an annual health screening as part of his job. We were expecting good results when he went in yesterday because of our diet change but the numbers still blew us away. Even the nurse was amazed by the change in his numbers over the previous year and said it was the best numbers she had seen all day. Here's how his results looked:
Last year - 116/89 (considered pre-hypertension)
This year - 114/76 (now in the normal range)
Last year - 176
This year - 114
HDL (Good) Cholesterol:
Last year - 43 (anything around 40 is considered dangerously low and 60 or higher is good)
This year - 76
Last year - 30.7% (considered obese)
This year - 19.1% (considered the healthy range for his age)
Was changing hard? A little. I had to learn a new way to cook but there are so many great plant based recipe sites and cookbooks out there. I highly recommend Oh She Glows, Happy Herbivore, and if you have kids...Peas and Thank You has some great recipes for families. All three have blogs and the latter two have great cookbooks which are for sale here on Amazon.
We don't look at eating this way as deprivation. I think you have to go into a change like this with a positive attitude or you will set yourself up for failure. We focus on all the great things we can eat, not the stuff we no longer want to.
I should also mention that we eat wild Alaskan salmon a couple times a month and I do use a little olive oil in our food occasionally (which isn't recommended by the movie). I think everyone needs to make changes that they feel will work for them otherwise it's hard to stick with it. If you don't think you can be meat or dairy free 100% of the time, try 90%, or 75%, or 50% or whatever works for you. Even smaller changes can make a big difference to your overall health and well being.
I have since shared this documentary with family and friends who were impressed with the positive changes we experienced and I highly recommend it to anyone who is looking to make a change to their health and the way they feel. Thank you Dr. Esselstyn and Dr. Campbell for giving our family a new lease on life! And thank you to the creator of this documentary for presenting such important and life changing information in such an approachable way.