Movie Review: The Game Changers

This revolutionary, myth busting documentary uncovers shocking facts surrounding the plant-based diet. It begins with Bruce Lee’s simple 4-point philosophy, which I believe can be applied to any part of our life:

  1. Research your own experience
  2. Absorb what is useful
  3. Reject what is useless
  4. Add what is specifically your own

Most great discoveries, or turning points in life, happen due to serious hardships and/or obstacles, and this holds true for our voice through the movie: James Wilks, a professional mixed martial artist. It was his severe injury that pushed him to uncover his road to recovery; it began with his hard-to-believe finding that the Gladiators, the original professional fighters ate a mainly plant based diet. This is further discussed later on in the documentary with various doctors and scientists explaining how early humans were actually predominantly vegetarian.

The media world feeds us the stereotype that meat eaters equal tough, strong and masculine. By the time science was coming around to disprove German chemist, Justus Von Liebig’s theory on how meat gives you energy, it was too late- the USDA was basing their protein recommendations on it. However, Game Changers does a great job breaking this misconception. We see how plant-based diets actually fuel great athletes’ successes, and help them achieve their optimum; we hear actual world champions vouching and living by this.

It was around 1908 the world started seeing plant-based Olympian winners, and the documentary goes on to showcase snippets of how various athletes’ performance increases when they turned vegetarian/vegan. The protein fallacy is undone by the way they demonstrate how animals are really just the protein ‘middle-men’- all that protein you get from a steak or burger is actually from the plants the animals ate!

It was exciting to see live experiments done to showcase the almost immediate detrimental impact a meat-based meal has in your blood, and therefore directly affect an athlete’s overall performance. Fascinating facts and figures, like drinking beet juice before training allows them to cycle 22% longer and bench press 19% more total weight, just further reinforce their point. The documentary went on to explore how a plant-based diet also helps with repair, which is imperative for any sports person’s overall performance. The turning point for James was when we applied all his research to his own life and this results in him being able to sustain an exercise he usually could only do for 8 minutes for an entire hour, effortlessly!

Steering away from athletes, we are shown why people who look ‘healthy’ still have heart attacks, what the impact of their meat heavy diets are doing, and how the most effective way to prevent and reverse this is through a plant-based diet. “You hit like a vegetarian”, words from the famous Arnold Schwarzenegger, who at one time weighed 250 pounds, now prescribes to the plant-based diet.

Game Changers truly challenged “masculinity” by measuring erections while using diet as the variable, and yes, the trend continues, men who ate a plant-based diet were “more masculine”. 

James recalls how when cigarette advertisements were banned during sport broadcasting, the meat industry stepped in, which lead him to uncover the fact that the meat, dairy and egg industries have funded studies denying the connection between ill health and their products.

Towards the end of the documentary, almost like a “by-the-way”, it explains just how “terminal” eating meat is on our environment, with almost three-quarters of all agricultural land in the world being used for livestock production and the single biggest habitat destruction. The show beautifully ends by reassuring us that we don’t need to be victims of what our parents and grandparents suffered from; however we should also be prepared to act on the “truth” you set out to find!