After the disappointment in the last episode of Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, it was a wonderful surprise to see that the administrator of West Adams High had hopefully found a loophole, so that Jamie and his kids could indeed cook for the entire school, at least as an assembly. The administrator said that the school was based on experiential teaching and preparing kids for college, so healthy eating fit right into their principles. In the mean time, Jamie continued his role of instructor, trying out different subjects beyond culinary arts.
In math class, Jamie taught about calories and consequences by allowing students to choose a snack between soda, chocolate bars, pizza, or oranges. He then allowed them to experience weight gain using weight backpacks. Jamie then took his math students out to the track having the students walk around the track enough times to burn the calories of what they had just eaten.
If you are like me, you didn’t realize that ABC had snuck Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution back into the line up on a new day and time. Luckily, I was able to catch up on Hulu.com. Hopefully, the rest of the season will continue on Fridays at 9p EST.
In the third episode of the second season, Jamie finally made some progress with Deno at Patra’s who we saw last episode. Jamie offered to renovate the entire diner and join him live on Ryan Seacrest’s radio show if Deno would agree to upgrade the meat in his burgers from the patties he knows nothing about. Deno said that his concern was more about if his customers would like it rather than the extra 13 cents per patty, but he also spoke about the “bottom line” a lot in this episode. Jamie introduced Deno to Sophia, one of the students from West Adams High, who shared her story and her concern that fast food is the primary contributor to diabetes in her entire family.
I was appalled that Deno would argue to a crying teenager that fast food is a choice, just like alcohol or cigarettes. When a child is given fast food, whose choice was it to purchase it? When lower quality ingredients are used to make foods, whose choice was that? Yes, I choose not to eat fast food, and my coworkers have said they hide their “bad” lunch choices from my sight. Yet, I am disturbed by the lack of compassion and the choice to blame rather than to take responsibility for one’s own choices.
Nutritionist Resource provides a huge support network of qualified/registered nutritionists, enabling visitors to find a professional close to them and appropriate for their needs. The site also provides a wealth of information and advice about nutrition.
Almost a quarter of adults in England were classified as obese in 2009, and according to some research, one in three UK adults will be obese by 2012. This equates to thirteen million people, which is an overwhelming figure.
Over 9000 premature deaths each year from obesity were recorded at the beginning of this decade, and that was in England alone. With obesity being associated with numerous diseases (including Type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, cancers, stroke and even death) something needs to change.
In episode two of Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, Jamie made another attempt to build a bridge with the LAUSD school board by visiting another school board meeting to give an update and express his hope that they could work together.
Unfortunately, he doesn’t seem to have made an impact, and the school board does not seem open to working with Jamie. Jamie was forced to take to the streets dressed as a tomato with a group of volunteers in fruit and vegetable costumes to create grassroots momentum for the food revolution. Jamie and his volunteers handed out healthy lunches, flyers with suggestions on how to get involved, and T-shirts with messages like “Let Jamie Oliver In” and “Feed Me Better” to parents and their children. Back in Jamie’s Kitchen, we got to see that Jamie was copied on at least 745 emails to the school board after this venture. Jamie was hopeful there were more than a thousand more on which he had not been copied and that these emails would make a difference to the LAUSD school board.
While I was typing up my review of the season premiere of Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, my brother requested a milk shake as a snack, so of course I tested out what we had just seen Jamie demonstrate, trying to convince the fast food owner to serve healthier options. Jamie and the restauranteur faced off on whether a milkshake requires ice cream to really be a milkshake. Jamie made a version with yogurt that passed the taste-test of a child, but the restaurant owner was not convinced that it could qualify as a milkshake without ice cream.
For my milkshake, I grabbed two bananas out of the freezer, added pourable vanilla yogurt from local Trader’s Point Creamery, organic milk, and blended it well. I’m not a fan of yogurt, but it even passed my taste test.
The premier of season two of Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution was better than I had hoped. It had everyone in my house shocked and engaged. I couldn’t keep up with the discussion on twitter because #foodrevolution was a trending topic with hundreds of tweets every minute. If you missed it this week, I will catch you up. Hopefully you can join the conversation tweeting live with us next week.
This season Jamie is in Los Angeles, but he has been banned from the LAUSD school system. Even after going before the school board, not like a celebrity but like any other citizen in a three minute slot, Jamie was dismissed unceremoniously. At one point, Jamie stated that his welcome in Huntington, WV, reportedly the unhealthiest city in the U.S., was warm compared to the cold shoulder he was receiving in L.A. Because he was not allowed in the schools, he asked school children and their parents to bring him food items from the school. Jamie stated that it was the worst school menu he had seen anywhere (and twitter seemed to agree). It was revealed that to save money, food is only prepared in one kitchen for all the schools in L.A. – the meals were only warmed in house.
I am excited to announce that we finally know when Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution season two will begin! After watching this preview for season two it seems that the delay may have been a result of the obstacles Jamie faced in bringing his revolution to Los Angeles, California.
When Jamie was told that his permits to work in the L.A. schools had been revoked, he declared war. I anticipate a lot of interesting public demonstrations in season two. I am hopeful that we will see that such grassroots campaigns are even more powerful than sharing his message with families with the assistance of the schools. I am excited that Jamie has continued his revolution despite setbacks and obstacles.
The man best known for his theatrics while trying to help schools serve healthier lunches has once again claimed the spotlight. During an interview for The Guardian, Jamie Oliver was asked, in his opinion, what he thinks is the trouble with today’s youth. Oliver, who is currently filming a show in which he tries to help high school drop outs, pulled no punches with his response.
“I’ve never experienced such a wet generation. I’m embarrassed to look at British kids. You get their mummies phoning up and saying: “He’s too tired, you’re working him too hard” – even the butch ones.” Oliver describes difficulties in recruiting staff for his restaurants, saying he uses “bulletproof, rock-solid Polish and Lithuanians who are tough and work hard” because “British youngsters no longer know the meaning of hard work.”
Chef Jamie Oliver hosted a design challenge on Open IDEO, a site that promotes collaborative problem solving. Oliver asked the community, “How can we raise kids’ awareness of the benefits of fresh food so they can make better choices?”
Part of Oliver’s Food Revolution, the challenge led to 198 final concepts, from which 17 winning concepts were selected. The concepts tackle the issue of healthy eating on many different fronts, from the grocery store, to schools, to home activities. To illustrate the whole process, Oliver and Open IDEO created a booklet that you can download.
Most often known for her starring role on Bravo’s Top Chef, Padma Lakshmi has selected a new focus. The host of the reality show joined the ranks of Michelle Obama and Jamie Oliver in her desire to help improve childhood nutrition. Recently, she petitioned Congress to support The Improving Nutrition for America’s Children Act (H.R. 5504), which would allow schools to serve more fruits, vegetables, and low-fat plant-based meal options.
Lakshmi sent Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi a letter asking for her support. “Being a new mother and cookbook author, I am
very passionate about creating nutritious and delicious meals for fans, friends, and family. I’m writing to ask for your help in creating the same opportunities for America’s children… This will help students form healthy habits and will also help prevent childhood obesity, diabetes, high cholesterol, and even heart disease later in life.”