Yesterday I watched this movie and just loved it! I've been wanting to see it for a while and just discovered it was on Beamafilm - an Australian independent movie streaming site for documentaries and real story movies. It has some great films to watch and best of all, we get free access with our library membership!
I've watched a couple of other sugar documentaries before, and this one has basically the same message and information as those, but I felt this one was told in a fun and interesting manner - capturing attention with some great effects, cameo appearances by famous actors and a personal story.
Damon, the star of the film, cut sugar from his diet several years ago, but embarks on a journey to see the effects on his body of eating 40 teaspoons of sugar (160 g) of sugar daily for 60 days. 160 g sounds like a lot - but he ate this daily without having cakes, biscuits, chocolates or fizzy drinks. This was just from added sugars in cereals, bars, yoghurts and basically processed foods!
160 g may sound like a lot in a day, but it really isn't. After the first sugar documentary I watched, I kept a record for just one day for our family to see how much sugar we ate. We each had an average of about 75 g per day, and I think we eat pretty healthily - although we do have cakes and biscuits every day! Just being aware of how much sugar was in our diet has made us think more about the choices we are making when it comes to what to eat!
But back to the film. Over the space of 60 days, Damon did not really change the amount of calories he ate compared to his normal diet, but he put on several kilos in weight, simply by changing the source of a lot of those calories to sugar. But the sugar didn't just have an affect on his weight, it also affected his health; both physical and mental.
It was shocking to see him demonstrate the amount of sugar in some things, by representing it with plain teaspoons of sugar. For example he compared a bowl of packaged cereal to a bowl of a couple of Vita Brits (which have no added sugar) with the equivalent amount of sugar on top - a seemingly huge amount when represented in this way.
Seeing the story of an 18 year old American guy who was about to have all his teeth removed because they were so decayed and dentures put in after years of fizzy drinks, was shocking. Particularly since he said he will continue to drink fizzy drinks!
I believe the movie managed to convey a strong message about the damage that sugar is doing to not just our bodies, but our minds too and our society.
It also touched on the fact that the sugar industry is encouraging the consumerism and instant gratification mindset that society has developed over the past few decades which is potentially damaging financially, socially and in terms of health.
I personally really enjoy chocolate, cakes and sweet treats but try to eat them in moderation. Watching these sugar documentaries has made me want to try going sugar free, even just for a short time - perhaps a month. I'm not yet convinced to go sugar free completely, but you never know how I might feel after a short term trial!
Do you eat much sugar? Do your kids?
I would definitely recommend this movie to watch, and I will watch it again with our girls. It is so important to understand what we're eating and putting into our bodies, so we can make our own informed choices for a healthy diet.