So when I stopped by my friend Katie’s blog, Yes I Want Cake, I was thrilled to see she’d partnered with Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, which works to educate every child about food, inspire families to cook again and empower people everywhere to fight obesity.
This is a movement I’m totally on board with. Exposing kids and their families to real, nutritious food and spreading the buzz on health? Sign me up. In fact, I just did.
Jamie launched his Food Revolution back in 2010, and his latest project is a small but mighty extension of that: The Giving Assistant. It’s an app you can download for free onto your web browser with just a few clicks, and it acts as a virtual fundraiser, giving money to the cause every time you make a purchase with one of their online partners – like gap.com, hotels.com, bestbuy.com. When you check out, a portion of the proceeds is automatically donated to the Jamie Oliver Foundation. It’s that simple. (more…)
Food Revolution leader Jamie Oliver may have stuck his foot in his mouth this week while giving an interview in Australia.
Jamie Oliver, the celebrity chef, cookbook author, and health advocate was in Australia to promote his partnership with the government to address the nation’s obesity issues. While giving an interview with a female NBC News journalist, Oliver got very defensive with one of her questions after she asked if he had gained weight.
“I don’t know. I am very healthy. I think the last time I had a filling in my teeth, which was quite recently, I was in good nick. But really, I am not really sure. Are you from a tabloid? Thank you for noticing, you bitch.”
Oliver later explained that he wasn’t feeling well after having drinks the night before and that he didn’t understand what the question was implying.
“I went out last night and had a few drinks after a very long day, (and) my brain did not quite understand that question.”
Oliver also defended his health to the critics who came down on him for not practicing what he preaches about health.
The last episode of Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution ended with a teaser about the appointment of a new superintendent for the LAUSD. This final episode of the season began with Jamie meeting with Mike of MLS at Patra’s restaurant.
Deno, Patra’s owner, reported that business had continued to be good with his new healthier menu. Mike informed Jamie (and us) that the new LAUSD school superintendent was willing to grant autonomy to schools that can show results. I also learned that schools are not eligible for reimbursement for the free lunch program if they do not serve flavored milk. Later, when we get to meet the new superintendent, he says that he wants to get rid of flavored milk in LAUSD schools, which we now know that he has accomplished. Jamie predicted that with Los Angeles taking such a proactive move, that soon we may see flavored milk eliminated from schools around the country.
With the new superintendent, Jamie was allowed to go back into West Adams High, even into the school kitchen, where he and his culinary arts students got to try out the new healthier school menu items.
My favorite part of Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution this Father’s Day week was Jamie’s visit back to the Barrett family to see if they have stayed away from fast food since his last visit. As Jamie strode up the sidewalk, he noticed that they were growing herbs and vegetables. The father and the teenage son answered the door in aprons, in the midst of preparing dinner for themselves and Jamie. They had even filled the living room with all kinds of produce in jest of Jamie filling their home with fast food on his last visit. The father stated that he had lost 16 pounds already and, most importantly, feels good about himself as a father now that he cooks and has dinner at the family table with his sons.
The episode started with Jamie visiting a convention for school lunch cooks. He let us know that it is not just the LAUSD, but he has also been denied access to 75 other school districts. The comments by the cooks and administrators made it clear that people are afraid of bad press.
I find it sad when we try to pretend that we are perfect and/or do not open ourselves up to improvement through real awareness. I work with people frequently who confess less than functional habits. Just because Jillian Michaels already works out daily, does not mean she is better than the person asking for help to start exercising more often. In fact, I often find that the person trying to make a change has more courage and is working harder than the person who has already developed a healthier habit. My favorite part of the school lunch cook convention was Jamie commenting on the fact that during airing of the Food Revolution, commercials for fast food or convenience food are also being aired.
Parents of children in the Los Angeles School District have something new to talk to their children about when discussing healthy lifestyle choices: the absence of flavored milk in school lunches. On Tuesday, June 14, 2011, the Los Angeles Unified School District voted 5-2 to remove flavored milk options from its school menus.
Many school districts – including Washington D.C. – have passed similar acts in their efforts to make the meals they serve their students healthier while also combating childhood obesity. Los Angeles is the largest school district to ban sugar-laden, artificially flavored milks from their lunches. This district serves 650,000 meals a day at 1,000 different locations. In addition to removing milk from their menus, Los Angeles schools will be removing other unhealthy options such as corn dogs, chicken nuggets, and other fast food items. In their place, the district is adding more vegetarian options, such as spinach tortellini with butternut squash and California sushi rolls.
“Absolutely, by the fall the district will be a national leader,” said a senior advocate for the California Food Policy Advocates, Matthew Sharp.