DANGEROUS MEALS

Premiere: 2005 WDR, Menschen-hautnah
Writer, Director: Peter Moers, Frank Papenbroock
Camera: Peter Moers
Editor: Vera Berg
CGI: 3DCompAni, Jörg Sonneborn
Duration: 28 Min.

Why do young girls reach puberty earlier and earlier? Why do heart attacks, incidence of cancer and adult-onset diabetes increase? Is it because of the food itself or its packing which for example consists of the omnipresent plastic? Scientist have first indications that our food affects the genes.

The past shows how food can really influence our human genome: During the hunger catastrophe in the Netherlands in the war winter 1944/45 thousands of people die, the remainder survive with sugar beet residues and crusts. Also pregnant women hardly get something to eat and their unborn children are chronically undernourished. After the war things get better, but the children of the hunger winter conspicuously often fall sick with cancer, heart diseases and diabetes as young adults. Even their children are not healthy. They suffer more often than others from allergies.

An only recently discovered switching system of the organism, the Epigenome, demonstrates how something of the kind could happen: the infantile body adopted to severe food deprivation and can`t manage the oversupply of the times of plenty.

In fact, nutrition can change the human genetic material for some generations. Thus we should be more careful. Because you are what you eat!