New Survey Reveals Most Effective Documentaries for Inspiring People to Choose Vegan

More and more people are choosing plant-based foods, and documentaries have played a crucial role in this shift. 

Veggly, the top-rated dating app for vegans, has released new data from a global survey highlighting the most compelling documentaries for inspiring new vegans. So let’s deepen our understanding of the brutal reality of animal exploitation and ignite a desire to choose compassion by watching the documentaries that made the list.

Cowspiracy (2014) 

Cowspiracy sheds light on the environmental impact of animal agriculture, presenting startling facts about how the industry contributes to deforestation, water pollution, and climate change. The film urges viewers to adopt a plant-based lifestyle as a way to reduce their carbon footprint and protect our fragile planet.

Earthlings (2005) 

Narrated by Joaquin Phoenix, Earthlings reveals the suffering of animals used for food, clothing, entertainment, and medical research. With shocking footage and gripping accounts, the film prompts viewers to reconsider their relationship with animals.

What the Health (2017) 

From the creators of the popular documentary Cowspiracy, What the Health sheds light on how corruption in government and big business contributes to keeping people sick. This investigative documentary will be an eye-opener for anyone concerned about our nation’s health and how big business influences and profits off it.

The Game Changers (2018) 

The Game Changers investigates the relationship between protein and strength by featuring top athletes, special ops soldiers, and scientists who challenge conventional beliefs about food and health.

Dominion (2018) 

Through hidden-camera recordings and expert interviews, Dominion reveals the horrible truth behind animal agriculture, prompting viewers to evaluate the repercussions of their food choices.

Forks Over Knives (2011) 

Forks Over Knives explores how many chronic illnesses can be managed or prevented by avoiding animal-based and processed foods. Citing the benefits of plant-based foods, the film advocates plant-based eating for a longer, healthier life.

Seaspiracy (2021) 

Seaspiracy is a thought-provoking documentary exposing the harmful practices of the commercial fishing industry and emphasizing the urgent need to protect marine animals and our world’s oceans. During the film’s production, the team discovered the massive scale of devastation the global fishing industry causes and the alarming way governments and environmental organizations have benefited from it. 

Eating Animals (2017) 

Inspired by Jonathan Safran Foer’s memoir, Eating Animals examines animal agriculture and the impact of our food choices.

Live and Let Live (2013) 

Live and Let Live investigates our relationship with animals; the history of veganism; and the ethical, environmental, and health concerns that motivate people to adopt a vegan lifestyle.

Before the Flood (2016) 

Before the Flood explores the impact of climate change on ecosystems, endangered species, and Indigenous communities worldwide, as well as what can be done to protect them.

Glass Walls (2012) 

Glass Walls asks whether more people would choose plant-based food if they could see inside slaughterhouses.

Eager for more? While the documentaries below didn’t make the list, they are fantastic options for your next movie night.

The Animal People (2019) 

Joaquin Phoenix’s passion for animal rights is reflected in The Animal People. This inspiring film shares the story of six brave activists who faced an FBI investigation for exposing one of the world’s largest animal-testing laboratories.

Food, Inc. (2008) 

Food, Inc. delves into how corporations have monopolized the food industry in the United States. It covers the entire food supply chain, from the farms that produce our food to the restaurants and supermarkets that sell it. 

The Cove (2009) 

Winner of the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature, The Cove exposes a cruel practice of some Japanese fishers: the slaughter of dolphins in a hidden cove in Taiji. The film educates viewers about this practice, showing how dolphin families are ripped apart and killed. 

They’re Trying to Kill Us (2021) 

They’re Trying to Kill Us is a follow-up documentary to the 2017 film What the Health. It follows John Lewis as he travels the country to explore why people of color suffer from diet-related illness at disproportionately higher rates than white Americans. They’re Trying to Kill Us provokes critical discussion and thought about food justice as Lewis interviews hip-hop artists, medical experts, activists, scientists, and even animal farmers and former slaughterhouse workers about injustice in all its forms.

The Smell of Money (2022) 

The Smell of Money is about everyday people in a life-or-death battle with one of the world’s most powerful companies. The heartfelt documentary follows North Carolina residents as they take on major pork producer Smithfield Foods in a fight for their right to clean air, pure water, and a life free from the stench of pig manure.

You Are What You Eat: A Twin Experiment (2024)

You Are What You Eat: A Twin Experiment examines the effects of different diets and lifestyles on four pairs of identical twins over eight weeks.

Eating Our Way to Extinction (2022) 

Eating Our Way to Extinction is a nongraphic documentary exploring how our broken food system contributes to ecological collapse around the world. Narrated by Academy Award winner Kate Winslet, the one-of-a-kind film features undercover footage, shocking information from globally renowned figures and leading scientists, and firsthand accounts from Indigenous people directly affected by animal agriculture and climate change. 

Documentaries can be powerful tools to educate and inspire viewers to adopt a more compassionate and sustainable way of living. They shed light on animal cruelty and the environmental impact of factory farming, encouraging a shift toward a food system that protects our planet and spares animals a life of suffering. By watching these thought-provoking films and choosing more plant-based food, we can make more informed decisions and foster a society that values kindness, empathy, and harmonious coexistence with all living beings.