Documentaries About Obesity:  23 Best Shows About Overweight

Did you know that being obese can bring along a bunch of health problems like trouble breathing, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease? It’s not just about those physical struggles; being overweight can mess with your sleep, make it tough to stay active, and even make stairs feel like a mountain climb. But you know what? The impact isn’t just on your body. It messes with your mind and emotions too. It might lead to feeling not so great about yourself, kind of cut off from others, and dealing with feelings like anxiety and being down. If you’re curious, there are some documentaries about obesity that you might want to check out. I get it though, we are all busy bees these days, so it’s important that they’re worth your time.

Here are a few things I kept in mind before putting together this list. In my books, a good documentary about obesity should give you interesting ways to look at why it happens, what it leads to, and maybe some ideas about how to deal with it. No need for a full rundown on how many burgers someone can munch on.

1. Obesity: A Deadly Risk – Obesity Documentary (2001)

So, there’s this documentary about obesity that really shines a light on how big of a deal it is worldwide. Can you believe that in the US alone, more than half the people – 55% – are in the heavyweight zone where their health is at risk?

The cool thing about this documentary is that it digs deep into all the stuff that plays a role in making people obese. They don’t just blame it all on one thing – they look at everything, from the world around us to what’s in our genes.

But here’s where it gets real. The documentary isn’t just about numbers and facts. It’s about people. They’ve got four folks in there who are living with obesity and really fighting to get back on track with their health and their lives. It’s like you’re right there with them, rooting for them to make it.

2. USA’s Obesity Epidemic: Heart Attack Grills, Fat Camps and Plus-Size Beauty Pageants – USA Obesity Documentary (2021)

The documentary “USA’s Obesity Epidemic” is quite fascinating as it delves into the topic of obesity. It looks at how there are more plus-size beauty pageants now and how body positivity is gaining momentum in response. On the other hand, it also talks about the serious treatments that obese individuals sometimes have to undergo. Shockingly, nearly 160 million Americans are struggling with severe overweight issues. What’s surprising is that despite the government’s push for people to lose weight, the rates of obesity continue to rise.

The documentary also sheds light on the tireless efforts of healthcare professionals. They’re working hard to come up with better and more effective ways to treat this condition. It’s heartening to see these dedicated individuals trying to make a positive difference.

3. Welcome To The Fattest City In The USA – Documentaries about Obesity (2019)

In this documentary, you’ll get to know Houston, Texas, America’s fattest city, up close. It shows how size becomes a big deal in this city – not just in terms of buildings, but also when it comes to people’s waistlines, and that comes with some serious outcomes. The non-stop food ads make it hard for folks to resist adopting unhealthy eating routines. What’s remarkable about this obesity-focused documentary is that it gives you a chance to meet the actual residents of the heaviest city in the United States.

4. The Difficulties of Child Obesity – Documentaries about Obesity (2021)

This documentary zooms in on a group of seven kids who are carrying extra weight as they grow up. It digs deep into their experiences and emotions, shedding light on the challenges of navigating adolescence while dealing with being overweight. The real gem of this documentary is its focus on “generation XXL,” showing these young folks as they begin to grasp the impact of the food they eat on their bodies. For kids and parents dealing with weight issues, this documentary has the power to open eyes and spark understanding.

5. Keith Martin, Fattest Man – Documentaries about Obesity (2013)

In this documentary about obesity, you’ll follow the journey of Keith Martin, known as the world’s heaviest man. At just 44 years old, Keith’s life was cut short after a tough fight against obesity. He took a brave step by opting for a drastic surgery to shrink his stomach size. This powerful documentary delves into his battle with food addiction, aiming to inspire viewers to take the right steps and make positive changes before obesity takes over their lives.

6. OBESITY: Old Before My Time – Obesity BBC Documentary (2016)

Documentaries About Obesity

This documentary on obesity delves into the concerning rise in the number of young individuals grappling with different illnesses as a result of obesity. We all understand the negative aspects of consuming fast food, yet many continue to consume excessive quantities, hastening their susceptibility to developing obesity. You can watch it on Dailymotion.

7. Super Size Me (2004)

documentaries about obesity

Check out this documentary, directed by Morgan Spurlock. It digs into the aftermath of munching on fast food by tracking Spurlock as he eats only McDonald’s grub for a whole month.

Spoiler alert: the documentary wraps up by dropping the bombshell that gorging on fast food, especially in big helpings, can seriously mess up your health. Yep, it’s a shocker.

This film’s right up the alley for those who want to get the lowdown on how fast food wrecks your health and how those fast-food joints push us into bad eating habits.

Back in college, I caught Super Size Me, and man, it opened my eyes. Imagine, with an hour off for lunch, I hit up McDonald’s almost every day. This documentary’s a mix of fun and facts, and Spurlock’s little experiment gives you a whole new angle on the topic.

Looking for something that’s gripping and eye-opening (minus all the science stuff)? This is where you should begin. Plus, it’s often folks’ first pick in the world of documentaries—definitely a “must-watch” if you’re into flicks about obesity and chowing down.

8. Fed Up – Documentary on Obesity (2014)

documentary obesity

Katie Couric is the voice behind this documentary. It digs into how the food industry and the U.S. government are connected to the obesity issue. They shine a light on sugar’s role in modern diets.

The film’s takeaway is clear: too much sugar leads to obesity and health problems. The blame also goes to the food industry and the government for not helping.

If you want to learn about the link between sugar and obesity, plus how the food industry affects our health, this documentary is a good pick.

It’s a documentary that makes you think. It tells you how the sugar industry works and what happens when we eat too much sugar.

But here’s something to remember, especially if you’re new to documentaries. They often pick one thing to blame for everything. This might not tell the whole truth. Obesity is more complicated.

The documentary brings up strong points and expert views that challenge what we usually believe about food and health. Just know that the sugar story isn’t the only one. Still, I recommend watching it, both for the sugar insights and the documentary itself.

9. Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead (2010)

documentaries about obesity

This documentary follows an Australian entrepreneur named Joe Cross. He decides to do a 60-day juice fast to get healthy and lose weight. The film teaches us that making healthier choices, like eating more fruits and veggies, can really help us feel better.

I can’t believe I didn’t know about this before!

I really liked “Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead.” It made me feel motivated and excited. It shows that big changes in how we live can mean big improvements in our health.

But, even though Joe Cross’s journey is something many of us can understand and feel good about, most experts (and even people like me who aren’t experts) would say that smaller, more doable changes are better. Those are the changes we can stick with. Losing weight and being healthy take time, more than just a few months.

Still, if you’re interested in trying out juicing (the healthy kind!), this documentary is worth watching!

10. The Weight of the Nation (2012)

documentary obesity

HBO made a documentary series in four parts. It’s about the big issue of obesity in the U.S. The series looks into what causes it, what happens because of it, and how we might be able to fix it.

This series is a bit different from the other stuff out there (the other stuff is catchier, but this one’s more real, I think).

After watching, you’ll see that fixing the obesity problem isn’t simple. It’s like a puzzle with lots of pieces: people need to change how they act, laws and rules need to change, and even how society sees things needs to change.

“The Weight of the Nation” is fair. It looks at the problem from all angles and has ideas for how to make it better. I kind of wish they told more stories about regular people, but it’s still good if you want to know about the big picture, not just one person’s story.

11. That Sugar Film (2014)

documentary obesity

In this documentary, Damon Gameau, the filmmaker, explores how sugar affects our bodies. He decides to eat a lot of sugary foods for 60 days, like an average Australian’s sugar intake.

The documentary shows that eating too much sugar, even from things that seem healthy, can hurt our health.

Oh, the sugar topic again! Nothing else seems as bad for us according to the media.

But, without being too nitpicky, “That Sugar Film” is a fun and informative documentary. It mostly talks about sugar and health, not much more.

I really liked how Damon Gameau tried the sugar experiment himself. It got my attention and taught me things. I even felt guilty about my ice cream while watching it. So, I guess that counts for something.

12. Fat Head (2009)

documentaries about obesity

Tom Naughton, the creator of this documentary, questions the usual ideas about diet and health. He looks closely at the advice from the government and food industry.

The documentary suggests that diets with less fat and more carbs might not be so healthy. It also says that saturated fats might not be the main reason for heart problems (could it be sugar instead?).

“Fat Head” is a documentary that really makes you think. It challenges the usual beliefs about diet and health, and that’s something I like. It kind of makes me believe that no one really knows what’s best for eating, and someone could make a documentary saying my own diet is perfect.

I have to admit, the documentary shows strong proof and reasons. It’ll make you rethink the advice you’ve heard about food. After watching, you might even want to correct your old-school doctor.

13. Globesity: Fat’s New Frontier (2012)

documentaries about obesity

This documentary takes a look at the big problem of obesity all around the world. It’s mostly about how it’s affecting developing countries and how big food companies play a part.

The documentary says that the reason for more and more people being overweight is because of processed foods and how the food companies make things. They’re a big part of why there are so many health problems linked to obesity.

Guess what? Obesity isn’t just a thing for lazy Americans. I’m kind of hoping for a time when we all see obesity as something people everywhere deal with, not just in rich countries. Maybe then we’ll really focus on ending world hunger!

But, this film shows that using fast and processed food isn’t the best way to fix hunger. I think stopping hunger should be most important, even if we’re not eating super healthy. But, maybe I’m not getting the whole point here.

14. The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite (2010)

The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite (2010)

This documentary is based on Dr. David Kessler’s book. It’s all about why we eat too much and how the food companies make it worse.

The documentary says that sugary, fatty, and salty stuff in processed foods makes us eat more. That’s why we get bigger and have more health problems. Personally, I think my emotions mess me up, but I can’t resist those yummy salty and fatty foods…

What I found really cool is how this documentary shows how the food companies trick me every day. I’m not totally sure all my cravings are because of their tricky ads, but it’s nice to put some blame on them!

15. The Complete Skinny on Obesity (2012)

documentaries about obesity

So, there’s this seven-part documentary series from the University of California Television (UCTV). It’s all about the reasons behind the obesity problem—like how our bodies work, the environment, and society stuff. You might think it sounds kind of plain, right?

But here’s the twist: the series figures out that dealing with obesity needs lots of things to change. People’s actions, rules the government makes, and what everyone thinks about food and health—everything plays a part.

Even though it might not be super thrilling or brand-new, “The Skinny on Obesity” is a good show if you want to really get why there’s an obesity crisis and what we can do about it.

If you want to learn a bunch (maybe a whole bunch), this show really looks at the whole obesity thing. They talk about tons of stuff, which could feel a bit like too much (maybe a bit boring), but if you’re all in to understand, it’s worth it.

16. Why Are We Fat? – Documentary on Obesity (2016)

documentaries about obesity

This documentary follows Chef Simon Gault as he looks into why there’s a big problem with obesity around the world. He’s trying to find ways to make people healthier. The movie ends by saying that lots of things, like bad food, not moving enough, and how society affects us, all add up to make more people obese. They think that to solve this, we need to look at everything together.

The coolest part of this documentary is how it talks about how society can make us overweight. It’s not just about eating sugar and getting fat. It’s more complicated than that, especially for those of us who are overweight.

If you’re interested in learning more about why this happens and what we can do about it, you should definitely watch this. It’s worth your time.

17. Killer at Large: Why Obesity is America’s Greatest Threat (2009)

obese documentary

This documentary dives deep into why so many people in the United States are dealing with obesity. It talks about how the food we eat, the government rules, and how much money we have all play a part.

Honestly, I worry more about nuclear war, but I get that I can actually do something about obesity.

The documentary ends by saying that we can’t just do one thing to fix obesity. We need to change how we act, what the government does, and how society sees things. Kind of like other documentaries that talk a lot but don’t do much.

What’s really cool about this film is how it shows that obesity isn’t simple. It’s complicated. They prove it by bringing in smart people and showing proof. So, if you want to understand why so many people are dealing with obesity, you should totally watch this. I’d say it’s good for pretty much everyone.

18. Sugar Coated (2015)

Sugar Coated (2015)

We’re talking about sugar once again! “Sugar Coated” is all about how the sugar industry has been affecting our health. They figured out how to make people not worry about how much sugar they eat for a really long time.

Just like the ones we’ve seen earlier, the documentary ends by saying that the sugar business is a big reason why so many people are struggling with obesity and health problems. But this film makes it really interesting to understand.

“Sugar Coated” is a documentary that makes you think. It shows how the sugar industry tricks us into thinking everything’s fine when it’s not. If you want to know more about how sugar affects you, you should definitely watch it. I’d recommend it to anyone who’s curious about what the sugar industry is doing to our health.

19. Bite Size (2014)

obese documentary

This documentary is all about four kids in America who are dealing with being overweight. It shows their personal struggles to get healthier and deal with how people see them because of their weight.

At the end of the movie, they say that helping kids with obesity is about them wanting to change, their families helping, and the world around them changing too.

If you want to know what it’s like for kids who are overweight and why it’s important for them to be healthier, “Bite Size” is a good choice. It makes you understand their problems and why it’s not easy. If you’re looking for a story to help you feel what it’s like for people dealing with obesity, this is it. It doesn’t ignore the fact that some people struggle from the very start because of things like their genes. For some of us, it’s really tough. Give it a watch and maybe you’ll see where I’m coming from.

20. Hungry for Change (2012)

Hungry for Change (2012)

This documentary pulls back the curtain on how the diet, weight loss, and food industries trick us. It gives us real advice to lose weight in a healthy and smart way.

At the end of the film, they say the secret to being healthy and feeling good is to eat whole and nutritious foods. You should stay away from the fake stuff that these industries try to sell.

“Hungry for Change” is a documentary that shows us what’s really going on with diets and food. It’s like they’re revealing secrets that we all should know by now. Especially after watching so many documentaries that do the same thing.

The movie also gives us practical tips to be healthier in a natural way. It’s a must-see if you want to improve how you feel and be well. If you’re tired of quick fixes and want to know how to be healthy for real, this is the one to watch.

21. Forks Over Knives (2011)

documentary on obesity

his documentary is all about how eating more plant-based foods can help fight obesity and diseases. They show proof that foods from animals and processed stuff can cause lots of health issues.

At the end of the movie, they say that if you eat more plants, you can really get healthier. “Forks Over Knives” is great if you’re wondering about eating more plants and how it’s linked to feeling better.

This documentary is like a teacher. It’s convincing and tells us why eating more plants is a good idea. Some people don’t agree with it (and even make fun of vegans being chubby), but the movie has proof and stories that show how eating plants can totally change your health. If you want to know more about how eating more plants helps or need a push to make better choices, you should check it out. It’s worth a watch.

22. Fast Food Babies (2011)

obese documentary

This documentary by the BBC is all about how fast food affects kids. It follows three families who are trying to stop eating so much fast food and start eating better.

At the end of the movie, they say that eating too much fast food is really bad for kids. Parents are super important in helping their kids eat healthier.

You know what? I guess I can blame my parents for something else now! The families in the documentary share their own stories, which helps us see how hard it is to stop eating junk food and start eating better. If you want to know more about how fast food messes with kids’ health, this is a good watch. Especially if you’re a parent and need something else to feel guilty about!

23. Carb-Loaded: A Culture Dying to Eat (2014)

documentary on obesity

This documentary is all about how foods with lots of carbs and processing have become really popular and how they’re linked to obesity and health troubles.

In simpler words, it talks about how food that tastes great is actually making us sick.

At the end of the film, they say that eating too many sugary and processed carbs can cause a bunch of health issues. They believe going back to eating natural and whole foods is a better way to be healthy and feel good.

This film has smart people and proof that go against what we usually think about diets and health. Even though I don’t fully agree that carbs are all bad (I need energy, right?), I would suggest watching this if you want to know more about how modern diets affect us. It’s good if you want to understand the benefits of eating less processed stuff and fewer carbs.

The power of documentary about obesity storytelling in raising awareness

Documentaries have a unique ability to captivate audiences and convey complex information in a compelling manner. They use storytelling techniques, powerful visuals, and expert interviews to engage viewers emotionally and intellectually. Through personal narratives and lived experiences, documentaries create a connection between the audience and the issue at hand, fostering empathy and understanding.

By presenting the human side of the obesity epidemic, these films dispel stereotypes and challenge societal perceptions of weight. They encourage conversations and facilitate a deeper understanding of the factors contributing to obesity. Furthermore, documentaries empower individuals to become advocates for change, encouraging them to share the knowledge they have gained and inspire others to take action.

Critiques and controversies surrounding documentaries about obesity

While documentaries play a crucial role in raising awareness about obesity, they are not without their critics. Some argue that these films oversimplify the issue, focusing solely on personal responsibility and neglecting the broader socio-economic factors at play. Others contend that documentaries may perpetuate weight stigma by presenting extreme cases or promoting unrealistic expectations.

It is essential to critically analyze and engage in conversations surrounding obesity documentaries. By acknowledging the limitations and biases inherent in these films, we can separate fact from fiction and have a more nuanced understanding of the issue. This critical approach allows us to appreciate the value of documentaries while recognizing the need for a comprehensive, multi-faceted approach to combat obesity.

The role of government and policy in addressing obesity

Addressing the global obesity crisis requires a collaborative effort that extends beyond individual actions. Documentaries shed light on the role of government and policy in creating environments that support healthy choices. They explore successful interventions, such as implementing sugar taxes, regulating food marketing to children, and improving school nutrition programs.

Documentaries also delve into the challenges faced in implementing effective policies and the influence of lobbyists and industry interests. By highlighting the power dynamics at play, these films encourage viewers to advocate for evidence-based policies that prioritize public health over profit. They inspire individuals to engage with their representatives, join advocacy groups, and participate in grassroots movements aimed at creating a healthier society.

Final Thoughts on documentaries about obesity

This article lists 23 documentaries about obesity, covering different aspects of the problem like what causes it, what happens because of it, and ways to solve it.

Now, I wouldn’t say watch them all in one go, but it’s probably a better choice than chowing down on fries and ice cream.

The idea is that by watching these films that show obesity from different sides, we can learn more and talk better about it. It’s a tricky issue, and these documentaries can help us understand and talk about it.

At the very least, maybe after watching these, we can all try to be a bit nicer and more understanding to people who are dealing with obesity, even if we don’t know everything about why. Trust me, there’s more to it than just eating less.

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