Forks over Knives

>My camera is out of batteries and my charger is missing! I ordered a new one, but it won’t arrive until Wednesday, so my haul post is going to have to wait. I also have some delicious recipe posts in the making, but I have been wanting to write a post about the movie Forks over Knives for some time. So, I thought I would take advantage of my camera being out of commission to do just that. I live in East Texas. I don’t have any friends or family who are Vegans. So when I decided to pursue the Vegan path, I began doing as much research as possible. I feel very lucky that the first movie that popped up on Netflix was Forks over Knives. According to the Forks over Knives website, the movie “examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of the degenerative diseases that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting animal-based and processed foods.”

I think of Veganism as a tripod: health, environment, and animal welfare. However, with my family and friends it is difficult to approach explaining my choice to eat a plant-based diet because of environment or animal welfare; however, health is a cord I could strike. I immediately suggested my family watch the movie. When my friends, family, and colleagues approach me about my food lifestyle, the movie provides me with a conversation starter. The pre-movie conversation usually goes like this:

“Vegan, why aren’t you eating meat? I love my meat [insert every meat eating argument here: I couldn’t give up bacon, cheese, fish, etc].”

“I chose to become a Vegan for many reasons one of which was my health. Have you seen the movie Forks over Knives? It is a really interesting movie that is available on Netflix. Why don’t you watch it this week, and then we can talk about it at the [BBQ, birthday party, dinner, swimming pool, etc] this weekend].”

Isn’t that awesome!

While I do really think the movie provides a great and sound reason for switching to Veganism, what I love the most about it is it gives me a way to talk about my lifestyle with my family and friends. That is something that is so difficult. I often think I sound like a fanatic or a hippie or obsessive or a down right crazy person when discussing my choice with my meat eating, butter loving, cheese grubbing loved ones.

How does the post movie conversation go? Well, I don’t think I’ve converted anyone to Veganism . . . yet, but the conversations go something like this:

“I watched that movie. It was CRAZY [the wow it blew my mind kinda crazy]. My favorite part was [insert some fact that resonated with them]. I’m not ready to give up all my meat, but I do think I can cut back. What do you eat?”

“You know for the kids breakfast was super easy to make the switch because they LOVE the taste of almond milk! You should give it a try, we have some in the fridge, and did you know Oreos are Vegan? You can get some great advice from the PETA and Vegan Outreach websites, let me send you the links.”

Isn’t that awesome too? So far, my conversations really have gone that way!

If you aren’t already following a plant-based diet, you should watch this movie because it can save your life. You probably know in your heart you should be eating more plants or you wouldn’t be reading my blog. This movie will give you the excuse you have been looking for to do just that. Even if you just go one day a week with no meat (come on get on board with Meatless Monday), you will be better off, and this movie will show you how changing your diet can literally save your life. The movie provides you with evidence to support changing your diet.

If you are just starting a plant-based diet, the movie will provide you with reinforced evidence to support your decision. When you start to feel your resolve waiver, the movie will provide you with the reminders of why you made the choice in the first place. I, personally, have watched it several times in order to remind myself of the important information I gleaned the first go around.

If you have been a Vegan for a long time, then you will benefit from having new information at your disposal. And you might just benefit from having the movie as a conversation starter for your non-Vegan friends and family. I have noticed that in the Vegan community, we tend to get insular because it is easier to be around other Vegans. After all, they eat the way we eat, they wear what we wear, they share our views. It is comfortable. But if we are to make a difference in the world, then we need to kick rocks and take our message to the street. Forks over Knives gives us a tool that is accessible and relate-able to anyone in order to do just that.

Some of my favorite parts of the movie were the real people who tried the new diet, the discussion of the studies done by the researchers, the realistic look at healthcare costs and its relationship to nutrition.  As we continue to discuss healthcare costs, we really should be discussing nutrition.

I was already a Vegan when I watched this movie, but it just reinforced my decision. It made me sit back and say, “ah, yes, I AM doing the right thing. I’m not crazy. This is a good thing.” I know that if I can get my loved ones to watch this movie, they will also AT LEAST cut back. That is the ultimate goal, right? I do feel like this movie changed my life. Now when people say, “Why?” I say, “Have you seen Forks over Knives?”

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