040 – Review of Movies Supersize Me Fathead

Published 12 years ago in food , Podcasts - 0 Comments

Paul and Jocelyn discuss both movies, Super­size Me which almost everyone has either heard about or seen and the later (2009) rebuttal, Fatheads.

Super Size Me

Paul begins with a bad joke and his general overview of Super­size Me, that received huge publicity and rave review, with a simple “utter crap” synopsis. Jocelyn gives a gentler overview with admission that she realizes and appreciates the point of the movie. The point of the movie is to connect fast food with obesity, but there’s more when you consider the most unhealthy meals, unhealthy habits, less physical activity etc. All of which were displayed in this movie.

Paul rebuts with the nonsensical assumption that McDonald’s is solely responsible for the problem – and he notes that McDonald’s has been around a lot longer than obesity epidemic in our country. The logic is flawed. They both talk about the realization of the enormous portions being served and huge quantity of food aka 5000 calories per day. The resulting liver problems and other organs that suffered as a result of the empty calories and overly processed sugary items consumed, was notable.

Paul finds it incredible that people want to blame corporate America for their personal unhealthy choices. He wonders what the outcome would be if an independent organizations compared the toxicity of McDonald’s, Burger King etc to the office vending machines. Jocelyn feels there is value in the movie’s display of portions that are out of whack, what happens to a healthy person with 5000 calorie per day intake, lack of activity and the life choice that lead to serious health problems. Consider the shakes, pop, desserts, fried aka excess carbs and surgery carbs; what do you think would happen if you gorged yourself everyday? Take it a step further and look at what schools are feeding our kids, look at the commercials during “family” TV or children’s shows. Not only do many of them demonstrate disrespect for parents but many make overly processed sugar based foods something that should be expected in their lunch box and on the home table.

Bottom line, whether the movie is crap or a wake up call, it took almost a year for the main character of Super­size Me to loose the weight gained and months to get his liver and cholesterol back to normal. Jocelyn feels the movie did have some merit in the big scope of things; Paul felt the overall message was deceptive and awful.


They both enjoyed it and the comedic way it was done. Paul gave them thumbs up for the amount of research they did and the new information that he gleaned about the cholesterol hype (BS), dangers of the Low­fat diet and our dietary pyramid that is grain based. Jocelyn replies that we are taught that we should eat major grains and have a low fat diet, BUT grains cause spikes in blood sugar as well as may lead to depression, higher cholesterol and since carbs convert to sugar which then causes the pancreas to produce insulin, too many carbs are dangerous and may lead to diabetes.

They both agree that there is so much BS in the food/science (using that term lightly) that is flat out wrong. They specifically mention the government stepping in to ensure that french fries are now fried with trans­fat (which may mutate blood cells) and even popcorn in a theater that was popped in coconut oil is now popped with hydrogenated oils. They also talk about the chemically extracted oils like corn, soy, canola vs naturally extracted oils like sunflower & safflower.

Both Paul and Jocelyn are in complete agreement about this movie, its merits and its thought provocation. The conversation moves to making money with food, the Heart Association sticker on cereal boxes that clearly are NOT heart healthy with the empty, surgery carb calories ($$) or the commodity of grains and the massive corporations based on that commodity ($$) and the scientists that are employed because of donations or corporate grants ($$) or the poor unemployed scientists that stood up and said “WAIT A MOMENT!!”.

The conversation then moves to communal meals be it family or intentional community vs convenience eating. They both agree that
convenience eating is a downfall. Paul is insistent that communal meals should not be on rare occasion, but daily or a couple times a day. Not only for the social aspect but when you eat at home, you usually eat better. Everybody into permaculture should see this movie according to Paul. Get your food from a more natural state and keep it simple – use polyculture. Paul ends with a reminder: Richness of Knowledge is great; Knowledge has to be exchanged. Share, share and then share some more. Post pictures of what you doing, what you’ve done, where you’ve failed and where you’ve succeeded. Use the forums for information, ask questions and share answers.

Relevant Threads

Bacon and Cholesterol
Should People Eat Grain
Nutrition re: Carbs
Good Lard is a Health Food

Credit: Mariane Cicala

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Tags: fat, grains, health