“What The Health” Goes Wrong

In # 10: Communicating food science by Thanh0 Comments

What the Health is a 2017 Netflix documentary film which critiques the health impact of meat, egg, fish, and dairy products consumption. Soon after the film is released, it creates a firestorm from a lot of nutrition experts and food scientists. It is an extremely biased pro-vegan documentary that exaggerates weak data and misrepresents science.

The filmmaker, Kip Andersen, talks about the genetics that run in his family with a history of heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. Thus, he concerns about his future health. This leads to his motivation in finding out the causes of these epidemics and how to prevent them. He decides to go on to interview experts that claim that sugars and carbohydrates do not cause negative effects to health but animal fat does. I agree with the filmmakers that processed meat is unhealthy due to its high content of sodium and preservatives. Processed meat is declared a carcinogen through many studies. However, it is not true that processed meat is equally dangerous as smoking cigarettes.

What the Health says sugar and carbohydrates have no correlation with diabetes. This is absolutely wrong. Several experts in the film downplay the role of sugars in health problems. Instead, they shift the target to animal protein and fat, despite the fact that plenty of research has linked sugar to diabetes and heart diseases. They say that our body cannot convert carbohydrates into fat. Yes, our body does convert excess dietary glucose into fat through the process of fatty acid synthesis. Additionally, the film claims that eating an egg per day is as bad as smoking five cigarettes per day because high cholesterol content in the egg yolk can buildup the artery plaque. This is totally ridiculous. It argues that dairy milk is bad due to growth hormones, saturated fats, etc., milk does not build strong bones because milk drinkers tend to have more fractures, dairy is correlated to cancers, asthma, type I diabetes, and cheese can cause autism and SIDS. There have also been plenty of reviewed and published studies in eminent journals that have not found any connection between dairy and certain kinds of diseases or cancer.

This film focuses on praising vegan diet by strongly degrading every other foods that are not plant-based. The scientific proofs it provides are weak and wrong. This causes confusions to consumers.

Picture:

http://www.whatthehealthfilm.com/

Link to the film:

http://www.whatthehealthfilm.com/

https://www.netflix.com/title/80174177

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