Bushman’s Secret

American’s have been engrossed in their image and use many methods to obtain the standard beauty. Women especially have been held to a higher standard in that they are viewed as a prize or “trophy” to their mate. Women straighten their hair, wear makeup, waist trainers, but recently weight loss pills have been a trend. Celebrities such as the Kardashian sisters and even Jennifer Hudson promote these alternatives to working out. But where do these successful pills come from? A factory in the US? In Rehad Desai’s documentary Bushman’s Secret we find that these pills originate in Africa.

In the Kalahari Desert, lives the San tribe, also known as Bushmen. They are seen as the village doctors who use plants to heal the sick. Hoodia, a cactus used by Bushmen for centuries, has caught the attention of many big pharmaceutical companies in America. The plant has nutritious properties to heal but also suppresses the appetite. This secret was unveiled the pharmaceutical companies in America and they now profit from the plant leaving the Bushmen with nothing. Desai’s film is impactful in that it shows the Bushmen being taken advantage of by Americans. It raises awareness that these methods Americans take to better themselves is making other suffer thousands of miles away. While the pharmacists are profiting from the plant continue to live lavishly and the Bushmen’s healing resources are becoming limited.

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