Worldwide, there are more than 850,000 vitamin and dietary supplements on the market today, fuelling an obsession with health and generating revenue of more than $100 billion annually. But where is the evidence that any given potion or pill delivers the promises plastered on the bottle?
That’s the central question driving Vitamania, a new feature-length documentary made by Australia’s Emmy-Award-winning science program-makers, Genepool Productions.
Hosted by Derek Muller – who also fronts the extremely successful YouTube science channel Veritasium – Vitamania traverses several continents and a couple of centuries, investigating the roots of our fascination with vitamins, and sorting the hope from the hype buried in the claims made for their efficacy.
In a story that encompasses Nobel Prize-winning research, corporate secrecy, snake oil salespeople and, astoundingly, cases of scurvy in modern day America, Muller sets out to empower consumers to make reasoned and informed decisions about vitamins — decisions that can save money, but might also save lives. Because vitamins, we discover, are not benign. They are biologically active compounds. We need to know what they do. We need to take them seriously.
Vitamania has its worldwide launch on August 12, when it debuts free-to-air on Australia’s SBS television channel, and on the worldwide pay service CuriosityStream. It will also screen on the Arte channel in France and Germany soon after.
Host Muller and the documentary’s director, Sonya Pemberton, are currently on tour around Australia, in a series of live events hosted by science event promoters, Think Inc.
The tour kicks off on July 30 in Perth, then moves to Sydney on August 2, and Melbourne the following day. More details are available here.
Cosmos has 10 double passes to giveaway to the Perth leg of the Vitamania tour, on tonight – Monday July 30 – at the Heath Ledger Theatre.
To get your hands on one, simply email email@example.com – but do it now, before they...