Subjects: Physical and Mental Health, Science & Nature, Environmental Studies
Six cancer patients make an unusual choice when faced with a bad prognosis and little chance of recovery: They decide to face the disease with their forks. An arduous but hopeful 5-year journey through unchartered territory ensues as the patients, ranging in age from a baby to a 70-year-old man, attempt to eat and juice their way back to health.
The capability of plants to prevent and cure illness is an ancient idea and central to medicine in both Eastern and Western traditions. But can food alone fight the deadliest disease of our era? Balanced, object, and intimate, THE FOOD CURE documents the personal struggles, formidable odds, and the arsenal of organic produce that accompanies these ordinary individuals in their extraordinary battles with cancer.
FEATURES EXPERTS INCLUDING
Dr. Jeffrey White Director of the Office of Cancer Complementary and Alternative Medicine, National Cancer Institute
Dr. Valter Longo Professor of Gerontology and Cancer Research at USC, Edna Jones Chair of Biogerontology, and Head of Longevity Institute
Dr. Terry Mason Chief Medical Officer, Former Chicago Public Health Commissioner
Beata Bishop Former BBC Journalist, former Stage IV Melanoma patient, Author of ‘A Time to Heal’
Stephen Alexander Government health policy advisor, Australia
MORE ABOUT THE FILM
When faced with a cancer diagnosis and a bad prognosis with conventional treatments, what would you do? In the documentary film THE FOOD CURE, six cancer patients make an unusual choice at this junction. Feeling they have little to lose, the patients pin their hopes on controversial nutritional cancer treatments based on a stringent, plant-based diet and a draconian juicing schedule.
In following the patients’ stories over more than five years – the point at which cancer patients are recorded as survivors in most statistics – filmmaker Sarah Mabrouk treads virgin ground in taking such an in-depth and long term look at what it is like to use nutritional approaches to treat serious, potentially fatal diseases. Shedding much-needed light on the important and increasingly prevalent topic of food as medicine, the film does not shy away from showing some of the more disturbing consequences of this choice.
People say “you are what you eat”, but is the power of food so great that it could actually cure cancer? Upon their return from the clinics, the protagonists face intense challenges at home, where they are expected to continue the therapy on their own for at least two years. Confronted with disapproving doctors, concerned family members, financial troubles, and the constant temptation to tinker with the dauntingly strict diet, they nevertheless attempt to adhere to their unconventional plan, which they see as their last chance.
The principle behind the alternative therapies they choose is that the body’s own immune system - when fully functional – can effectively detect and kill cancer cells. By restoring and boosting the immune system through strict diet and detoxification, the theory is that the cancer patient’s immune system can be revitalized, therefore resuming its job of selectively destroying cancer cells without harming any other cells.
This concept, once frowned upon by the medical establishment, is similar to the idea behind cutting-edge new immunotherapy drugs that are being heralded as the future in cancer medicine.
Do unusual holistic approaches and high-tech medicine have more common ground than one might think? Could a cure for cancer really be hidden in our immune systems - and in our food?
The film raises important questions about the nature of our food and medical systems, and about the role that lifestyle and nutrition can play in the prevention and treatment of chronic diseases. Providing a rare inside look into the challenges, accomplishments, and disappointments that go hand in hand with swimming against the stream, THE FOOD CURE tells an engaging story about what it is like to make a leap of faith when your life is at stake.
ABOUT THE FILMMAKERS
Director| Sarah Mabrouk holds degrees in journalism and film, and spent ten years working in news, primarily in Europe and the Middle East. She reported on the Iraq war, the Lebanon war, the conflict in Israel/Palestine, the Arab Spring, and Iran. Within the news world, Sarah has worked as a reporter, producer, speaker, camerawoman, production manager, and writer for press agencies, television, and radio. Her clients have included Associated Press, BBC, CNN, Gamma, France 24, Abaca, Agencia EFE, and ZDF. Sarah grew up in Washington, D.C. and speaks fluent English, Arabic, German, French, and Spanish.
Producer| Alexander Wadouh heads the Berlin-based production company Chromosom Film GmbH. His films, including A Coffee in Berlin (distributed in the US) and White Shadow (executive produced by Ryan Gosling), have won more than 50 international awards, among them six German Academy Awards, a European Film Award, the prestigious Dino de Laurentiis Award in Venice. They were sold to more than 30 territories.