In 2019 there were 600,000 vegans, or 1.16% of the population which is a staggering increase from the 150,000 (0.25%) in 2014. It’s now 2020, can we increase it by at least another 1-2% this year? With the Coronavirus pandemic, I wouldn’t be surprised if 2020 gives way for the biggest increase in vegans.
I personally went from eating meat to vegan overnight, after watching 5 documentaries in the space of a week. They were all huge eye openers and the lack of knowledge I had about the meat industry, prior to watching the documentaries was next to nothing. The increase in the number of vegans is due to a number of factors, but the one that is most prominent is people educating themselves on the impact of the meat industry. For many vegans like myself, it was a hard-hitting documentary that first inspired them to make the switch.
These must-watch documentaries will hopefully open your mind as well as your heart to the downfalls of animal agriculture and the many benefits of a plant-based lifestyle. They may not make you switch to a vegan diet, but they may encourage you to swap out one meat-based meal a day for a plant-based one. They may even get you to try out a vegan 30 day challenge.
Even if you don’t make any difference to your diet, you’ll definitely learn something new from at least one of these documentaries.
Let’s start with the one that I initially watched, which triggered the change for me – The Game Changers.
The Game Changers (2019)
This film, directed by James Cameron, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Jackie Chan, focuses on the benefits of plant-based eating for athletes. This film stresses more of the performance benefits of eating a plant-based diet -vs- just showing the negatives of eating too much meat.
It follows a diverse group of athletes that have thrived on a plant-based diet with the aim of dispelling the myth that consumption of animal products is key for athletic performance. You won’t see footage of animal cruelty like some other vegan documentaries, so rest assured. It definitely has a positive light hearted note throughout the film, rather than focusing on the negatives.
It’s 100% an entertaining watch, and even if you have no interest in turning to a vegan diet, I highly recommend watching it. If you are interested in vegan fitness, go check out my blog on where vegans get protein from as it will help you on your journey!
What The Health (2017)
What The Health focuses on the detrimental effects animal foods have on human health.
Kip Anderson and Keegan Kuhn speak to various medical professionals and researchers about the growing effects that animal products have on the human body. I don’t want to give too much away, but in summary they realise that major health organisations have conflicting interests when it comes to educating the public, uncovering the massive corporate influences that impact on a nation’s health.
This was the second documentary I watched after The Game Changers and I was really taken back by what I saw. If you or anyone you know, that is suffering with any health condition, I would really recommend you watch it. It will have you thinking twice about eating meat, for the sake of your health.
You can watch this on Netlix or buy the it from Amazon.
Cowspiracy was created by the same people who made What the Health. It is a groundbreaking environmental documentary following filmmaker Kip Andersen as he uncovers the most destructive industry facing the planet today – and investigates why the world’s leading environmental organizations are too afraid to talk about it. This film is focused on saving the planet, which is often an overlooked reason to go vegan, but in my eyes it is one of the biggest reasons!
You can watch this on Netflix.
Forks over Knives (2011)
This documentary has a similar focus to What The Health. It provides insights to the importance of a low-fat, plant-based diet in preventing or even reversing disease. It also follows the lives of people who were completely changed for the better by changing their lifestyle and diet.
This film is a great watch, and it shows how moving to a plant based diet can really improve your health.
Again, you can watch it on Netflix.
This is probably one of the more ‘extreme’ vegan documentaries. There have been a number of stories about people watching Earthlings and then immediately making the switch.
Shaun Monson exposes the animal suffering endured at puppy mills, factory farms, research labs and more. Yes, it will shock you, but it is the harsh reality of what actually happens!
You can buy it here from Amazon or you may even be able to find it on Youtube.
Are These Documentaries Biased?
Any documentary, is meant to make you feel a certain way, however all these documentaries have studies which back their claims and in a number of cases they are showing live footage. In my opinion, no they are not biased.
These documentaries have been made to open your eyes about what is going on in the meat industry and the impacts it can have on your health, the animals and the planet. I personally think that people who think these documentaries are ‘fake’ or ‘biased’ don’t want to make that transition, so would rather ignore the facts in front of them. Wake up people!
Let me know if you’ve watched these documentaries and how you found them..