4 documentaries that will inspire you to go vegan

Changing my lifestyle from being a meat eating, animal skin wearing, horse riding, ignorant human, to becoming a passionate vegan, was beyond daunting at first. I made the change after spending months watching YouTube videos about the benefits of a vegan lifestyle and exposing myself to the truth of what really happens within the animal agriculture industry.

Something I only did after becoming vegan though, was watch the inspiring documentaries you’ve probably heard vegans talk about, even if you’re not part of the community yourself. Watching them only helped to reaffirm why I’m living this lifestyle so if you’re reading this and you’re not vegan, I’d totally recommend checking out the list below and giving them a watch.

Earthlings

Earthlings was the very first vegan documentary I watched, or rather attempted to watch. I knew how bad the animal agriculture industry was, as that was my main reason for ditching animal products, but I hadn’t thought at that point about how humans also mistreat animals for entertainment, scientific research, clothing and profit. My main reason for going vegan was the farm animals I’d seen in videos having their throats cut and having their babies taken away from them. This documentary opened my eyes even further to how other animals are exploited for human gain.

Both Chris and myself only managed to watch a measly 20 minutes of the almost two hour long film before we had to turn it off because it was so upsetting.

If you’re someone who doesn’t know too much about how animals are treated by people, I’d highly recommend giving this documentary a watch. It’s available on YouTube, but I’ve embedded it into this post to make things easier for you. See if you can beat my 20 minute watch time.

Cowspiracy

Cowspiracy is by far my favourite vegan documentary, if not my favourite documentary of all time. It focuses on the environmental impact of animal agriculture and highlights the lengths big corporations that are supposed to be protecting our planet, will go to to keep up the appearance that they’re actually doing something to help, when in reality they’re doing the complete opposite.

This documentary is non-graphic so if that’s something keeping you from watching vegan documentaries, then rest assured you’re not going to be seeing anything gory in this.

Cowspiracy is filmed in almost a ‘follow me around’ style as Kip Andersen, who also produced What the Health, (which admittedly I still haven’t watched yet) sets out to find answers to questions no one else is even thinking to ask.

I’ve embedded a video of the documentary into this post but if you’d prefer to watch it without the Spanish subtitles, then it’s also available on Netflix.

Forks Over Knives

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Photo credit,Licensed under CC BY 4.0

Forks over Knives is another documentary I found super inspiring, especially when I was just beginning my vegan journey. This film focuses on the health benefits of a whole food, plant based diet, which is essentially a healthy vegan diet consisting of unprocessed foods.

It follows the lives of people suffering with multiple medical issues and documents the changes they see following a vegan diet, as well as including informative interviews with doctors and medical professionals.

As someone with minimal medical knowledge I found this documentary incredibly insightful. It’s packed with facts and studies that contradict everything we’ve been taught about health and nutrition from being babies and I feel like I’m way more knowledgable on how a whole food, plant based diet can impact the body after watching this film.

There wasn’t a video on YouTube for me to embed on here but you can find Forks over Knives on Netflix.

SWINE

SWINE is a short film come documentary I haven’t seen very many people talking about, but it’s one that’s stuck in my mind since I first watched it in the weeks after I became vegan.

The film focuses on the serious issue of antibiotic resistance and how animal agriculture is playing a huge part in this. Antibiotic resistance essentially means that when we develop an infection, the antibiotics doctors would normally prescribe us to treat it will no longer work. This happens because we’ll have ingested so much already from eating animals, who were also given antibiotics to treat infections that developed from the unsanitary conditions they live it, that they’ll no longer work when we really need them.

The film explains this is much better detail but hopefully you get the idea.

SWINE was produced by Viva! the vegan charity. I’d highly recommend visiting their website for more information on why you should go vegan and for tips on how to do it.

I’m always happy to speak to people about veganism and answer any questions people might have. If you want to know more or want any advice you can tweet me or DM me on Instagram.

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Review: Humblest of Pleasures, Hebden Bridge

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Humblest of Pleasures’ Instagram page is full of the most delicious looking cakes and wholesome comfort food, and the best part? It’s all vegan.

Situated in Hebden Bridge, a quaint town in West Yorkshire, Humblest of Pleasures is an adorable cafe, complete with pink shelves, potted plants and pretty, pink roses decorating the front of the bar.

I visited the cafe last month with my boyfriend Chris, after deciding we’d take a trip to Hebden Bridge for the day.

We arrived at Humblest of Pleasures around noon but unfortunately all the tables were taken as it was lunch time. A wander around the Antiques Centre and a couple of pints later, we went back to the cafe and found a free table to dine at.

Choosing what to have was an incredibly difficult task for both of us because everything on the menu sounded so bloody damn good. We’re used to going out to eat at restaurants and cafes that only have one or two vegan options on their menu, so when you’re given multiple options to choose from it can get a bit overwhelming.

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Both of us opted for the vegan Mac ‘n’ Cheese, consisting of macaroni pasta, and a ‘cheese’ and butternut squash sauce – costing £6.95 each. I also chose to add ‘facon’ to mine for an extra £1.

It was served in the cutest vintage looking bowls and the portion size was huge – we definitely got our money’s worth.

Unfortunately the taste of this dish left a lot to be desired. Now I know what some of you are going to be thinking, ‘Amy, it’s not real mac ‘n’ cheese, so of course it’s not going to taste like the real thing,’ but in all honesty it tasted like watered down rice pudding. There was no real cheesy flavour to it. In fact, it tasted sweet. I found myself eating a piece of vegan bacon (which was delicious by the way) with each bite to mask the taste of the sauce. It’s definitely possible to create an authentic tasting cheese sauce that’s vegan, but this one was just bland and both Chris and myself ended up leaving a lot in our bowls.

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As I mentioned previously, the cakes at Humblest of Pleasures looked absolutely divine on their Instagram page so there was no way I was leaving without trying one. All the cakes are freshly homemade and there’s different ones to try every day.

Admittedly I didn’t make a note of the name of the cake I tried, but it was delicious. One of the worst things a cake can be in my opinion is dry, but this was really moist (sorry to anyone who cringes at that word) and the flavour was lovely. The sponge had a slight vanilla taste to it and was really light and fluffy. The frosting on top and the filling in the centre tasted like sweet raspberries. It was definitely a welcome change from the usual chocolate cakes I opt for and the party rings on top were such a fun finishing touch.

I paid £3 for the slice in the photo above. I don’t think the photo does the size of it any justice at all, but I was so shocked at how big the slice was.

Although I didn’t enjoy the mac ‘n’ cheese, I want to revisit Humblest of Pleasures to try some other foods on their menu. The entire sandwich menu and full English breakfast are at the top of my list for things I want to try next, as well as some of their other cakes, given how much I loved the one I tried on my first visit.