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BELLY327 SparkPoints: (2,670)
Fitness Minutes: (1,671)
Posts: 53
1/10/13 3:30 P

Thank you all!!! I definitely feel better after reading your responses! I felt a little better when my twin sister called me last night and I talked to her about it. I am feeling hopeful today. Today I decided to put things into perspective and I DID take away some good things from the film. One thing I have done (that was recommended) was write on a sticky not "I accept myself unconditionally right now". The film said to do this everyday for 30 days and notice that all the negative thoughts that pop up at first will lessen over time! I'm even keeping a tally whenever I actually stand in the mirror and say that :) Now I am glad I watched it, but am not going to beat myself up about it all! THANKS AGAIN TO ALL OF YOU :) I love sparkpeople!

LOVE4KITTIES Posts: 4,690
1/10/13 2:02 P

I've watched the first 20 minutes of Hungry for Change and I don't think you should let this film worry you. The film made some good points at first and there were a lot of things that they said that were based upon sound science, then they then started mixing more and more pseudoscience in with that and ended up saying some things that are just, well, completely unfounded. I left the film at the 20 minute mark because that's all that was available on their website. Anyway, that's the way it is with a lot of stuff you see on tv or read in books these days, they mix in real science with fake and it's really easy to believe because they make it make sense.

So, don't worry about the film. You are not doomed to failure because you are not eating vegan nor are you doomed to failure because you aren't eating all natural foods. I'm not a vegan myself, but I have some vegan friends and I can tell you from watching them and from what they have told me that it's actually not easy to be vegan and do it right and so a lot of vegans end up eating diets that aren't healthy and they end up with deficiencies in things like vitamin B-12, iron, protein, etc. It's not too hard to have an unhealthy vegan diet. Vegans struggle with their weight too and it's not any easier to lose weight for a vegan than for anyone else. So far as natural foods, it probably is a good idea to avoid as much of the processed stuff as possible simply because of all the salt in it, but, I really don't see a need to avoid them completely. You can definitely be healthy and lose weight eating a combination of natural/processed.

You are having success with the changes you have made so far in your eating plan. You are doing well and you are definitely not doomed to failure! Keep on with what you're doing. If you do decide that you need or want to make some changes in the future, make them slowly and use the tracker to make sure that you're getting the nutrients that you need. Don't let the film mess with your head anymore. You're doing great.

Edited to add that I agree with the previous poster. The film was designed to mess with your head and make you feel this way. I could tell that right from the opening before anyone even started talking due to the fact that they picked "music of doom" or maybe you could call it "music of anxiety." The whole tone of the film is one that is designed to make you feel doomed if you aren't eating they way they say is best.

Edited by: LOVE4KITTIES at: 1/10/2013 (14:09)
1/10/13 1:42 P

As a vegetarian of 20 years and an on-again off-again vegan, I officially absolve you of any guilt! Stop beating yourself up! You are making healthy changes. Your changes don't need to be the changes that others have made. Is living a vegan life healthier? Who knows, really? I don't.

It sounds to me like you are doing better than the majority of Americans out there.

(By the way, that documentary was probably designed by the film maker to make you feel guilty. They have tricky ways of making you feel guilty, even if you've done nothing wrong!)

ARCHIMEDESII SparkPoints: (201,156)
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Posts: 27,418
1/10/13 10:34 A


There are many good health reasons as well as environmental reasons a person could eat a vegan or vegetarian diet. However, eating "meat" doesn't mean you're not healthy or won't lose weight.

And there's the thing about vegans, they can become morbidly obese. I do happen to know someone who is vegan and weighs over 275 pounds. French fries do qualify as vegan. Dark chocolate is vegan. We make an assumption that if a person is only eating veggies and grains, that they must be lean. Which in some cases, is true. but not all. If a person eats too much of anything, they'll gain weight.

So, don't worry that if you don't eat vegan you'll never lose weight or be healthy. That's just not true. I consider myself a reasonably healthy person and I do eat meat. I just don't eat it in the portions I did when I was overweight. I do try to watch my intake of red meat. I prefer chicken and pork.

Is it morally wrong to eat meat ? That's a whole different argument. You don't have to give up meat to be healthy, but you do have to watch your portions. When I was over weight, I used to think that a half a chicken was a normal portion size ! Honestly, I'd go to KFC and get their 4 piece meal all the time. That's a half a chicken, but that's what I considered dinner. Once I learned to get my portions in line, I did start losing weight.

I've also told people that if I went back in time and gave myself one piece of advice that would help me lose weight and be healthier, it would be to eat 6-9 servings of fresh fruit and veggies each and every day. You really don't have to be vegan to be healthy, BUT you should eat more veggies.... in general.

There's a lot of information out there and some of it is conflicting. Try not to worry, but do become an informed consumer as they say. Learn about nutrition. Have you read any of the great Spark articles on basic nutrition ? If not, start reading some of them. The more you learn, the less overwhelmed you'll feel.

I'm also going to recommend a book that will help sort things out as they say. It's by Michael Pollan and it's called the Omnivore's Dilemma. It's excellent.

Here's one of his famous quotes about what to eat,"Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants"

SP_COACH_NANCY SparkPoints: (0)
Fitness Minutes: (112,042)
Posts: 46,222
1/9/13 9:26 P


As someone who lost over 80 pounds 4 years ago and have kept them off for 4 years, I am here to say I did not have to give up meat, processed foods or eating out to do so. There are no good foods or bad foods. This does not mean I get to eat candy, pastries or fried foods every day, but I can say that when I plan for them I can have them.

While I have not see this documentary, I will say that one does not have to go to extremes to lose weight and be healthy. The idea is to follow a plan you can live with for the rest of your life. Eating is not supposed to cause anxiety and angst. As I said to a friend today--healthy eating will evolve over time, but that does not mean perfect eating either.

Be well!

Coach Nancy

STARDUST2K4 Posts: 1,376
1/9/13 9:22 P

I watched that documentary a few days ago myself. I personally thought it was a great documentary, and contained a lot of information, however, I didn't personally feel "doomed". The only thing I've done to lose weight is count calories, exercise, and control my portions. I haven't completely given up junk, nor have I resorted to a vegan diet, or white meat only diet, and I'm doing just fine. I personally believe that individually, you have to find out what works for you. While cutting out a majority of processed foods has helped me greatly, I'm not going to cut them out completely. I know that's not a change I could maintain for the rest of my life.

I hope your anxiety doesn't affect your motivation to work towards a healthier you. Remember, this isn't all or nothing. Overhauling a diet like that, really is an 'all or nothing' approach in my opinion.

BELLY327 SparkPoints: (2,670)
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Posts: 53
1/9/13 8:46 P

I just watched "Hungry for Change". As a person who was Vegan for a year, and is not a chicken and turkey eater..this documentary has messed with my head bad. I just tracked everything I ate this whole week and have lost 4 pounds. I was feeling so positive about the changes I have made, but after watching this documentary I feel doomed to failure because I'm not eating Vegan, or as natural of foods as they are talking about. It's causing me lots of anxiety. I want to do things the way I have been this week. It sucks that now I feel overwhelmed and a intense feeling of doubt that wasn't there just an hour and a half ago! Positive words of encouragement would be good.

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