While New Yorkers find a safe haven from the heat in chilled movie theaters, I refuse to step foot in one unless it’s for a blockbuster like Superman or the upcoming Hunger Games. Did you know that movie tickets are now $14? I remember when they were $6. So rather than break the bank, I recently caught up on two documentaries: Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead and Jiro Dreams of Sushi.
FAT, SICK, AND NEARLY DEAD – Meet Joe Cross. He’s the Australian business man who loses 100 pounds and cures his autoimmune disease after starting his health journey on a 60 day juice fast (while consulting his doctor). Along the way he meets and inspires a morbidly obese truck driver from Iowa, Phil, to start his own juice fast. In my opinion, Phil steals the spotlight and becomes the star of the documentary film. You find yourself rooting for him and can’t wait to see his transformation at the end.
Not only did the film inspire me to start juicing again, but this graphic really stuck with me.
I’ve always known that calories are not all created equal and our bodies don’t process 100 calories of cotton candy the same way as it does 100 calories of carrots. But this graphic addresses calories from a volume stand point. When you eat fried chicken, you are still hungry (and consume more calories) not only because of the salt cravings but because your stomach isn’t full. Look at the 400 calorie equivalent of vegetables. You get to eat so much more!
JIRO DREAMS OF SUSHI – This film has nothing to do about health or fitness, except for the fact that famous chef Jiro Ono quit smoking after he had a heart attack at 75 and feared being unable to work at his restaurant. Jiro loves his job. He’s the best at what he does, but he doesn’t think so and always strives for better. He believes no one should complain about work, but instead focus on mastering the craft. The documentary follows his day-to-day and the prep that goes into serving a meal at his Michelen Three-Star restaurant, Sukiyabashi Jiro, and his two sons who are both chefs but one in particular who is to succeed his father. Jiro Dreams of Sushi is not about food, but rather art, discipline, and patience – all things that could be applied to one’s health journey.
I think what both films do is make you think about the quality of food that you put into your body and the pace at which you consume. For Jiro and his family, they spent each day at the market bidding for the best fish. They also only worked with the best vendors, experts in each of their respective fields. Food is not just about taste, but about the experience: how it tastes, smells, feels, and even how/when its served. For Joe and Phil, there was no quality only quantity. Food became the poison that was slowly killing them, and for that they returned to the basics and went on a juice fast. There’s something spiritual about fasting. Fasting is about centering and focusing your attention on something bigger than yourself.
Both documentaries have recharged me and my view on food. Not only do I want to start juicing again, but like Jiro I want to take time in selecting my produce and only selecting the best. Because dammit, I’m worth the best!