Big Ideas from the Doc “Food Matters”

Last Friday, it was a pretty quiet evening, and with nothing pressing, I had a movie night on my laptop and finally watched this food documentary, which had been recommended to me several times.

I’ve seen plenty of material already on this topic: Food Inc., Forks Over Knives, Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead, Super Size Me, and Ingredients. So I didn’t expect to be completely shocked at what I saw, but I definitely learned a few things, and am now looking at how I can incorporate some of this into my life (no sweeping changes, more baby steps)!




So what’s this film all about?

With nutritionally-depleted foods, chemical additives and our tendency to rely upon pharmaceutical drugs to treat what’s wrong with our malnourished bodies, it’s no wonder that modern society is getting sicker. Food Matters sets about uncovering the trillion dollar worldwide ‘sickness industry’ and gives people some scientifically verifiable solutions for overcoming illness naturally.

“With access to better information people invariably make better choices for their health…”

In what promises to be the most contentious idea put forward, the filmmakers have interviewed several leading experts in nutrition and natural healing who claim that not only are we harming our bodies with improper nutrition, but that the right kind of foods, supplements and detoxification can be used to treat chronic illnesses as fatal as terminally diagnosed cancer.

The focus of the film is in helping us rethink the belief systems fed to us by our modern medical and health care establishments. The interviewees point out that not every problem requires costly, major medical attention and reveal many alternative therapies that can be more effective, more economical, less harmful and less invasive than conventional medical treatments.

The Food Matters filmmakers have independently funded the film from start to finish in order to remain as unbiased as possible, delivering a clear and concise message to the world. Food Matters.

That’s from the Food Matters site, where you can learn more.

I’m in complete agreement with their premise and mission: to educate that food truly has the power to heal and cure us—and to allow us to thrive! What we eat DOES make a difference in our energy, our mood, our productivity, our relationships, and our lives.

Yes, Food Matters.


Here’s the trailer…

Watch the film on Netflix or on the Food Matters site.

You can also get the Food Matters book, watch more interviews, and find a ton more info about the power of REAL FOOD at!



The Big Ideas

Just like in my post on Forks Over Knives, here were my top take-aways, and any questions or thoughts I had…


1. The body reacts to cooked food as a toxin; 51% of our meals should be raw foods.

Wow. That’s crazy—I had no idea the body reacts to cooked food as a toxin. I know I had heard that when you cook food you lose some of the nutrients (and yet, with some foods, I’ve heard that you need to cook them to get the full nutritional benefit).

I’m not going 100% raw, but I think I can probably hit the 51% mark, between smoothies, salads, and snacks.

2. Most doctors receive little to no nutritional education: less than 6% of graduating physicians in the USA receive any formal training in nutrition.

Yeah, I had heard this before, from multiple sources. Need any further proof? When was the last time your doctor prescribed FOOD to you? And I’ve seen plenty of out-of-shape, unhealthy doctors, too. I have a feeling if they *knew* what food could do, most of them would be eating that way.

This is just a plain sad fact. I don’t blame them the docs for the lack of education, but it just goes to show that we can’t blindly trust the “medical professionals” when it comes to health.

3. If the soil is devoid of nutrients (like on many farms where Big Ag is encouraged), the plants are, too. Enter: chemicals and pesticides to help things grow (and be toxic to eat).

Makes sense, though I had never thought about it that way. Another great reason to go to famer’s markets!

4. Spirulina is the highest protein source in the world.

According to Wikipedia, it is about 60% protein and is a complete protein. I came across this quote in my research: “people could live off it and water alone.”

Don’t think I’d want to, but that’s AMAZING, right??

5. Vitamins don’t heal the body, they enable the body to heal itself. We want to activate our own healing system.

Neat. :)

6. Cardiovascular disease is a lifestyle disease; it’s because of what we eat: processed food, meat, fat, sugar (and too much of it all) – and it’s reversible! It’s from a failure to eat right, but when we take the proper nutrients, we can arrest or reverse it without surgery.

While I totally want to go, “YEAH!”, it’s not always this simple. This is where the doc gets into the “absolutes” and sometimes, genetics do play a role. I do think that there are many more cases of cardiovascular disease because of how people eat, and for probably more than we think, through the power of food, those illnesses could be stopped and even reversed.

7. In some cases, the first symptom of cardiovascular disease is DEATH. That’s it. No warning: game over.

Um, Wow. That’s insane. First symptom: death. Not a helpful way to diagnose, huh?

To drive this home, here’s a great section from the PhilosophersNote on Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease by Dr. Caldwell B. Esselsytn…

“At this point, if you are like most of the patients I see in person, you are probably thinking something like this: “How on Earth will I be able to give up cheeseburgers, French fries, steak, mayonnaise, cheese, olive oil, and the other things I love?” One friend of mine, a lawyer, was so put off by the idea of giving up all those foods that he asked me whether he couldn’t keep eating his high-fat diet until he developed symptoms of coronary artery disease—and then stop eating fat. I dissuaded him from this approach by explaining that in fully one of four patients with heart disease, the first symptom is sudden death.” 

Yowsers! How’s *sudden death* for a “first symptom”?

If you’re like Dr. E’s typical patients, you might be thinking: “Wow. That’s pretty amazing that this Doctor can totally prevent and even reverse heart disease by following his program, but COME ON! Cutting out all animal products, dairy and oils?! That’s crazy!” 

If so, remember that the FIRST symptom of 25% of heart attacks is *sudden death*!! And, should you survive that, what’s more radical, changing your diet or getting cut open?!

8. Approximately 106,000 Americans die each year from normal, expected side effects from drugs.

Something seems pretty off, doesn’t it. This is, apparently, a statistic that our society is OK with. This is not from overdoses or wrong prescriptions or anything wacky—just the “normal” use and from EXPECTED side effects. They know these things are going to happen, that it might kill you, and it’s still cool.

I’d like to know how many deaths are attributed to the normal, expected side effects from FOOD! ;)

9. It’s relatively easy to get a drug licensed and on the market: the company just needs to show that the drug is more effective than a placebo in two trials; there can be MORE than two trials (but the company just doesn’t need to publish those).

Unbelievable, huh? Now I know that not all pharma companies are evil and that some meds are helpful, but this systems is just ridiculous, and I suspect is routinely exploited by those just looking to make a buck.

10. All drugs are toxic to the liver.

Didn’t know this one. We do have another “absolute” on our hands, so not sure this is 100% accurate, but I’d play this better safe than sorry and keep as MANY of them out of my life as possible.

This article on Wikipedia, entitled Hepatoxicity (a laugh riot!) states that more than 900 drugs have been implicated in causing liver injury. So, not sure that’s all of ’em, but again—I’m keeping my distance.

11. The human body has such powerful defenses that a normal, healthy body cannot and will not develop cancer, or any other chronic disease for that matter—and with good, rich healthy food, you can reverse these diseases.

This quote came from Charlotte Gerson of the Gerson Institute; her and her father before her have been committed to educating and providing training in an alternative, non-toxic treatment for cancer and other chronic degenerative diseases.

Again, genetics may play a role, but I really *want* to believe this one. Doesn’t it just sound awesome??

And even if you weren’t dealt the best genetic hand, wouldn’t it be smart to do *everything* you could to have the best system possible!?

Yeah, I thought so. :)

12. The only legal forms to cure cancer in the US are surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy; in many countries (including the US), it is illegal to treat cancer with nutrition.

We *know* that foods can be powerful healers when it comes to cancer. Did you know that cancer cannot grow or survive in an alkaline environment, yet the processed foods we consume (are acidic to our system). So many veggies are alkalizing, like celery, carrots, broccoli, mushrooms, eggplant, and kale!

It’s INSANE that doctors in the US can’t treat cancer with food; in fact, one doc in the doc (!), opened up an office in Mexico just so he could treat patients the way he believes in—that’s commitment!

And we’ve also seen people have TREMENDOUS results with a real foods approach to cancer, like Kris Carr and her Crazy Sexy Revolution.

13. You should do everything you possibly can to build the body up. Build the immune system nutritionally and use vitamins to help defeat disease.

At this point, this seems like a no-brainer, yeah?

14. Two handfuls of cashews are as effective as a dosage of Prozac.

Holy wow. In reading more, it appears that cashews contain tryptophan, and a handful of ’em are a couple thousand milligrams, which work as well as prescription anti-depressants.

I also know that *not* exercising is like taking a depressant, so let’s get out there, MOVE our bodies, and snack on some (raw, unsalted) cashews for some positive vibes!!

15. The best doctor in the world, and the best nutritionist in the world is YOU. You have all the equipment necessary in you to feel if something is right for you or not.

Couldn’t agree more. :)



All in all, I really enjoyed this short documentary and would *highly* recommend it as part of your journey toward a more nutritious and healthy life!


Have you seen this film? What did you think?

I’d love to hear your response + any other thoughts you have below.


Looking forward to learning more!