Todays Five Things Friday is all about the food industry, animal agriculture and some of the health benefits of following a plant-based diet. Now whether you choose to eat meat or not, I think we can all benefit from adding more yummy plant foods to our diet!
First up are 5 films about food production, factory farming and animal agriculture. If you’re interested in learning more about following a plant-based diet this is a good place to start. Some of these films have very graphic content but I think it’s important for people to understand where a lot of the food available to purchase comes from, as well as the environmental impacts of farming animals. As always, you should do your own research, but this is a good place to begin learning more on the subject.
1. Food, Inc.
(Available on Netflix)
An unflattering look inside America’s corporate controlled food industry.
(Watch for free on YouTube!)
Using hidden cameras and never-before-seen footage, EARTHLINGS chronicles the day-to-day practices of the largest industries in the world, all of which rely entirely on animals for profit.
3. Forks Over Knives
(Available on Netflix)
Examines the profound claim that most, if not all, of the degenerative diseases that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed foods.
Vegucated is a guerrilla-style documentary that follows three meat- and cheese-loving New Yorkers who agree to adopt a vegan diet for six weeks and learn what it’s all about. They have no idea that so much more than steak is at stake and that the planet’s fate may fall on their plates. Lured by tales of weight lost and health regained, they begin to uncover hidden sides of animal agriculture that make them wonder whether solutions offered in films like Food, Inc. go far enough.
FRESH celebrates the farmers, thinkers and business people across America who are re-inventing our food system. Each has witnessed the rapid transformation of our agriculture into an industrial model, and confronted the consequences: food contamination, environmental pollution, depletion of natural resources, and morbid obesity. Forging healthier, sustainable alternatives, they offer a practical vision for a future of our food and our planet.
BONUS: Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead
FAT, SICK & NEARLY DEAD is an inspiring film that chronicles Joe’s personal mission to regain his health. With doctors and conventional medicines unable to help long-term, Joe turns to the only option left, the body’s ability to heal itself. He trades in the junk food and hits the road with juicer and generator in tow, vowing only to drink fresh fruit and vegetable juice for the next 60 days. Across 3,000 miles Joe has one goal in mind: To get off his pills and achieve a balanced lifestyle.
5 Online Vegan and Vegetarian Resources
5 Vegan Recipe Blogs
(For more vegan recipe blogs, head over to my Blog Love page)
5 Books on Food Production
1. Eating Animals
Like many young Americans, Jonathan Safran Foer spent much of his teenage and college years oscillating between enthusiastic carnivore and occasional vegetarian. As he became a husband, and then a father, the moral dimensions of eating became increasingly important to him. Faced with the prospect of being unable to explain why we eat some animals and not others, Foer set out to explore the origins of many eating traditions and the fictions involved with creating them.
Traveling to the darkest corners of our dining habits, Foer raises the unspoken question behind every fish we eat, every chicken we fry, and every burger we grill. Part memoir and part investigative report, Eating Animals is a book that, in the words of the Los Angeles Times, places Jonathan Safran Foer “at the table with our greatest philosophers.”
2. Fast Food Nation: The Dark Side of the All-American Meal
In 2001, Fast Food Nation was published to critical acclaim and became an international bestseller. Eric Schlosser’s exposé revealed how the fast food industry has altered the landscape of America, widened the gap between rich and poor, fueled an epidemic of obesity, and transformed food production throughout the world. The book changed the way millions of people think about what they eat and helped to launch today’s food movement.
3. Folks, This Ain’t Normal: A Farmer’s Advice for Happier Hens, Healthier People, and a Better World
From farmer Joel Salatin’s point of view, life in the 21st century just ain’t normal. In FOLKS, THIS AIN’T NORMAL, he discusses how far removed we are from the simple, sustainable joy that comes from living close to the land and the people we love. Salatin has many thoughts on what normal is and shares practical and philosophical ideas for changing our lives in small ways that have big impact.
4. The Thrive Diet: The Whole Food Way to Losing Weight, Reducing Stress, and Staying Healthy for Life
5. The Ethics of What We Eat: Why Our Food Choices Matter
Peter Singer, the groundbreaking ethicist whom The New Yorker calls the most influential philosopher alive teams up again with Jim Mason, his coauthor on the acclaimed Animal Factories, to set their critical sights on the food we buy and eat: where it comes from, how it is produced, and whether it was raised humanely.
The Ethics of What We Eat explores the impact our food choices have on humans, animals, and the environment. Recognizing that not all of us will become vegetarians, Singer and Mason offer ways to make healthful, humane food choices. As they point out: You can be ethical without being fanatical.
BONUS: The CAFO Reader: The Tragedy of Industrial Animal Factories
The CAFO Reader is possibly the most powerful indictment of factory farming ever compiled, with essays from 30 of the world’s leading experts. It also offers a vision for a food system that leaves behind the horrific 20th century model of Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations.
The CAFO Reader brings the tragic world of industrial food production into sharp focus with essays on every facet of factory farming: health, environment, animal welfare, labor, politics, economics, and so on. This affordable reader is a companion book to the larger photo-essay volume, CAFO: The Tragedy of Industrial Animal Factories. It is sure to become a relied-upon resource for activists, food policy makers, academics, the media and the general public for many years. This project is a follow-up to the highly successful project Fatal Harvest, published in 2002. It is being supported by an extensive outreach campaign with events around the country.