Residents from Bracknell have taken on a 21-day plant based food challenge – which you can take part in too.

The challenge has been issued by Bracknell resident Kiran Meka and forms part of a healthy lifestyle documentary to rival Netflix offerings ‘The Game Changers’ and ‘What the Health’.

Mr Meka switched to a plant-based diet after suffering a medical emergency while running.

Mr Meka, 43, from Bullbrook, said:  “I could not breathe, my whole heart tightened and I just could not breathe.

“Every time I tried to do a little bit of a run it stopped me. The next day it subsided but there was clearly something there and I didn’t know what it was.

“I went to my GP, then got an emergency referral to Heatherwood Hospital, where they did all types of tests.

“I was suffering severe high cholesterol and I was pre diabetic.”

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He was then prescribed medication, but instead of taking it, Mr Meka decided to change his diet instead, after watching US food health documentaries ‘The Game Changers’, ‘What the Health’ and ‘Forks over Knives’.

A follow up appointment showed that the problem had been resolved and Mr Meka was given all clear.

The incident occurred in August 2019, and he has been on a plant-based diet ever since, and is an advocate of ‘Food as Preventative Medicine.’

So far, Mr Meka has managed to encourage 30 people around Bracknell to take part in the 21 day ‘plant-based health challenge’, with more and more people signing up each day.

He said: “This is a battle one bit at a time. It’s starting to snowball into something bigger.” He added that the challenge is a pilot project for more health initiatives down the line, and plans to have a fantastic community support network helping people to gently nudge their behaviours to take health into their own hands.

Bracknell News: Left, Dr Leila Dehghan-Zaklaki and right, Kiran Meka, at the launch of the 21 day plant based healthy food challenge in Bracknell. Credit: James Aldridge, Local Democracy Reporting ServiceLeft, Dr Leila Dehghan-Zaklaki and right, Kiran Meka, at the launch of the 21 day plant based healthy food challenge in Bracknell. Credit: James Aldridge, Local Democracy Reporting Service

Mr Meka’s challenge to Bracknell residents was issued following a launch held at The Royal Oak in Bullbrook on Saturday, October 30.

The launch was filmed as part of an as-yet unnamed documentary, which it is hoped will be a British contender to ‘The Game Changers’ and ‘What the Health’.

The documentary is being filmed by Jay Cox, who directed the 2016 documentary ‘The Ultimate Triathlon’ on Amazon Prime, which follows endurance adventurer Luke Tyburski on a gruelling journey from Morocco to Monaco fuelled on a strict whole foods diet.

Mr Cox’s documentary will follow the work of the Plant Based Health Professionals UK (PBHP), after his own battle with cancer.

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He said: “I had testicular cancer myself, went on a journey, I knew it was food but I didn’t know why, I found out being plant-based reduces the risk of cancer, and I went down the rabbit hole and found the PBHP.

“There’s a lot of documentaries out there that are American, and people can’t relate to it, and they go ‘oh yeah but that’s America’. So I wanted it to be UK based, so I found the PBHP and said ‘let’s do a documentary.’

“We want to do it in a really sympathetic way, we don’t want to tell anyone their wrong, we’re science based, fact based.”

The launch was attended by seven women and two men who are taking part in the 21-day challenge, which has been devised by PBHP.

The documentary will follow the work of the PBHP and monitor how the people from Bracknell fared during the challenge.

Dr Leila Dehghan-Zaklaki, a member of PBHP, was at the launch and will provide assistance to the challenge participants. Mr Meka is also a member.

The challenge claims to help people ‘easily transition’ to a plant-based diet. You can take part in it yourself by going to:

It is hoped the documentary will be released in Spring next year.