Vegucated – The Dangers of Watching Netflix Documentaries

It was a Sunday morning like many other mornings. Because I am a pitiful night person, I was up before the sun. Coffee was going, house quiet. It was one of those rare times when I could watch whatever I wanted on TV. Sounds good, yeah?

Being it was four in the morning, Netflix was the best option. Scrolled through some options. I love little documentaries. What I found was Vegucated. The little scroll over pop up thing said

This documentary follows three meat- and cheese-loving New Yorkers who agree to adopt a vegan diet for six weeks in an effort to get healthier.

That sounds fun, right? I thought so too! So, I pop it to the top of the “Watch Instantly” queue, fire up the PS3, and settle in.

What I didn’t know is that if you click through to more detailed information page, it says

In this documentary, three meat- and cheese-loving New Yorkers agree to adopt a vegan diet for six weeks. Lured with true tales of weight lost and health regained, they begin to uncover the hidden sides of animal agriculture. ~ emphasis mine

Not that I wouldn’t have watched it. I just would have been prepared.

I wasn’t.

Now don’t misunderstand. Plant based is not new to me. I gave it a great go at the beginning of the year when I completed my first Daniel Fast. It was the most amazing I have ever felt! Since then I have made a conscience effort to pay more attention to the food I put in my mouth. My diet (a word I have no problem using properly), is plant heavy. For health reasons. Because I can run faster, longer. Because I can lift more. Because my jeans fit better.

On Saturday, if you had asked me I would have explained that my diet is plant heavy but not restrictive. I am not stuck up about it. I allow for moderation and cheats. Why? Because for my health, that works.

That was Saturday.

This was Sunday.

Marisa Miller Wolfson, the Writer/Director/Editor of Vegucated, has created a snazzy little intro. It’s lighthearted and she is funny. I love funny. She has selected three folks who are also lighthearted, funny, and come across as genuinely nice people. I like that too.

They are interested in exploring this “vegan” thing and Marisa is happy to oblige. She is sensitive and non judgmental (score!) while moving the participants through this new process.

I am digging it.

Then she takes them, me, to see what I now affectionately refer to as, “The Film.” This is the aforementioned “uncover the hidden sides of animal agriculture” portion that I mentioned earlier.

Maybe I was still reeling from a devastating Dawg loss. Maybe my coffee was funky. Maybe the first Sunday of Advent had me feeling overly sentimental. Maybe the planets were aligned in such a way that throws off my equilibrium. I don’t know.

I was heart broken.

I won’t go into all the details here. It has only been 24 hours and I have not had time to vet out how much of it is unbiased and how much of it is hyperbole to illicit the intended response. Intellectually, that is important to me. However, personally, if a quarter of it is true, and I believe that it is as at least that, it is enough for me.

I say all that to say a few things. First, and most importantly to me, I am still not stuck up about it. While I love to share with you my journey, my discoveries, my epiphanies, I do not for one second think that my way is the only way. Hell, sometimes it isn’t even MY only way. I live with a husband and four children. I do not hold out any hope that they will, in the near future, choose this for themselves. I will still cook for them. The Blackburns are one of the coolest families I know. They are doing wonderful things. But for me, this is where I am.

When you start seeing more posts on the subject, I just wanted you to know why. Yesterday was kind of a game changer for me. If the blog is going to have continuity and not confuse, big moments are important to document. But know, there is no judgement.

And if you are a vegan, this is a solicitation for resources. I have started with Dreena Burton, Kris Carr, The Lean Green Bean, and Vega products. I am looking to make this exciting and appealing to at least those within my four walls. And maybe even exciting to others.

If you are local to the Savannah area, your input is amazingly helpful! Vegucated was shot in New York. The very true statement was made that veganism was made supremely easy there. Here it is doable, it is just going to take a bit more effort.

So, day 2. Here we go…

Comments

  1. I highly recommend the books How it all Vegan, The Garden of Vegan, and La Dolce Vegan by Sarah Kramer. They are full of recipes that are completely relatable for non-vegans and even non-vegetarians. Lots of comfort foods that are made vegan easily. She even has a great iPhone/iPad app (if you have one). I like to refer to How it all Vegan as my gateway to veganism. Sarah’s books are simple and non-judgmental. Not to suggest I’m in the same category as any of the resources you referenced, but I also write a vegan blog at http://www.veganmotherhubbard.com. Good luck!

    • Hi Sandra!! Thanks so much for coming by and the recommendation. I have added Sarah’s blog AND yours 🙂 to my reader. The twins are adorable and I am looking forward to getting to know you!

  2. Madeline @ Food, Fitness, and Family says:

    Lindsay isn’t vegan but definitely posts some adaptable recipes! LOVE her. She’s one of my besties. Some awesome vegan bloggers:

    http://www.bananabuzzbomb.com
    http://www.fortheloveofkale.com
    http://www.peasandthankyou.com
    http://www.peasandcrayons.com (not vegan but adaptable)

    Good luck!

    • Lindsay won me over with her Bean Bytes. What an amazing wealth of information that is!

      I added the others you listed to me reader 🙂 We will see how it all goes…(maybe it will improve my balance!)

  3. I second “How it all Vegan” – great recipes and also tips for natural living. OhSheGlows.com is excellent, as well – I love her pasta with avocado sauce. I believe that WellFed has a lot of local vegetarian/vegan resources.

    We were pseudo-vegans for awhile (still ate honey and eggs from a friend) and it worked well for our lifestyle. We stopped once my daughter had to go gluten- and soy-free (in addition to being dairy-free for her milk allergy). Now we only eat local farm-raised meat but it has it’s own challenges.

    If you’re interested in learning more about animal welfare in mainstream factory farms, check out “Eating Animals” by Jonathan Foer or “Omnivore’s Dilemma” by Pollan.

    • Hey Liz,

      I had not thought about the honey thing…I am a big proponent of the health benefits of local honey…that will be one of my next research topics I think.

      Thanks for both book suggestions…I pinned them both and the second one looked especially interesting.

  4. Anne-Marie (Miles) Callahan says:

    Hi April,
    I’m just now reading this post. I am an ovo-lacto pescatarian, which in English means I’m a vegetarian who is willing to eat eggs, dairy and fish/seafood. However, your post has me contemplating my dairy component – can you post more about the dairy side of things? I have found it very easy – even in Richmond Hill, Georgia to stay on this diet. The local farmer’s market at J.F. Gregory is a great resource… they’ve started back up – every Tuesday afternoon/evening… they have local honey, local, farm-raised beef and dairy, plus some of the farmers offer organic produce & eggs.
    Really enjoying your blog – keep up the good work!

    • Anne-Marie, dairy has never done well in my tummy. Cheese was really the only challenge to give up. So in that aspect it is more dietary than moral. I think if I had a happy cow and a happy chicken I would drink that milk and eat those eggs…but I don’t. And financially speaking, I just can’t afford to do that from others on a regular basis. But we are working through it and I will blog more about it soon!

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