“Food Revolution” for Thought

Written by abbynormally
April 5th, 2010

I’m finally caught up on all of Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution episodes, and I just wanted to share my thoughts. Not that my thoughts are of much consequence, but many people, and more every day (Hi, new readers!!!) read this blog (which is about me, in case you were confused ;)).

I’ll start with the good:

1) Jamie Oliver is adorable. I would watch his show even if he were talking about Nascar. You think I’m joking? He has a British accent, therefore I could listen to every word he ever utters. Someday I’ll blog about my obsession with everything British. But for now, suffice it to say that Jamie Oliver is on my “Reasons Why I Need to Move to England” list.
2) His goal is not to be some food snob, it is to help people. I have a soft spot in my heart for anyone making a living by making a better world for mankind. Food is just one way that you can help people. I am helping people by helping adults get their bachelor’s degree. My husband is helping people by designing highways to better meet the needs of commuters. Anyone with a mission to better the lives of others deserves, at the very least, our attention. Mr. Oliver, you have mine.
3) He is personal. He doesn’t start in Washington and change the policies (not that he could), and he knows that he can’t even step into the cafeteria and change the menu. He has to change the people. He picks out a family to support and connects with a group of high schoolers who are desperate for change. I truly believe that to encourage positive change, you have to build relationships. It can be a slow process, but that’s what Jamie is doing, and that’s when he has the greatest impact.

The not so good:

1) The schools should not be responsible for teaching children how to use a knife and fork or what a vegetable is. Those life lessons reside with the parents. I think that the school now has to teach the children because parents have obviously shirked that responsibility, but it’s just downright pathetic that a cafeteria worker has to instruct ten year olds about culinary etiquette. Whatever happened to the dinner table??
2) Preachers should not ever preach a sermon about eating healthy foods. Is there a direct passage from the Bible? No. You can infer from biblical passages that God cares what we eat, but a sermon should not be devoted to any diet aside from our spiritual one. My parents always said to me, “right doctrine teaches right living”. Preachers, spend your precious 45 minutes a week carefully explaining Scripture. For an individual to come to know Scripture better means that they come to know Christ better. And to know Christ better will inevitably affect the way one lives. I guess I’m worried that young Christians watching will think that boycotting McDonald’s is backed by Scripture. But truthfully, when a church or an individual starts legislating on things which the Bible does not, it leads to legalism. And I will never, ever support legalism, even if it means a diet of less trans fat.

So all in all, I believe that Jamie is doing the best with what he has to work with, but it really supports my initial belief about changing the way we eat. Change has to begin in the family. Government can try to tell us what to eat, schools can try to feed us all the right things, but it is the family’s responsibility, to teach, nourish, and live-out what it means to live a healthy life style.

Have you seen Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution? Do you feel that he is doing the right thing? What are some things you would change? Do you think he will be successful?

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23 Responses to ““Food Revolution” for Thought”

  1. Meghan says:

    I agree with you most certainly on what parents should be doing. But sadly when it comes to many things these days, kids aren’t getting what they need at home. I know lots of teachers who do more raising the kids than they ever planned!

  2. [...] This post was mentioned on Twitter by AJ. AJ said: My thoughts on @jamie_oliver Food Revolution http://bit.ly/9YSJqI [...]

  3. Morgan says:

    I’m loving Food Revolution, because I also have a little bit of a crush on Jamie Oliver. He’s adorable. It’s sad that so much has to be taken out of his lesson and meaning because these children don’t know basics, such as what a tomato is. I hope this serves as a wake up call, not only for diets, but for parenting as well.

  4. Dan says:

    Abby… I like the show a lot. However, I absolutely disagree with your, “The not so good #2.” I’m sure we could go back and forth about this for days, but suffice it to say I disagree whole heartedly (but then again, you and I never really agree on these types of things). That said… see you in a couple of weeks!

    • abbynormally says:

      LOL DAN! I hear you. When have we ever agreed on anything besides tequila? Can’t wait to see you (and let’s agree now not to talk about anything that may lead to a fight…)!!!!! ;)

  5. Sarah says:

    Abby, I agree that change should come from family and that many people neglect how important it is to sit down at the dinnertable and turn off the tv. It’s disappointing to see how much people rely on fast food becuase they are in a “hurry”, it would take maybe 5 extra minutes in the morning to pack a healthy meal, or if they are in a hurry just choose the healthy options that many fast food chains are now offering.

    I’m excited to see how Jamie can change this town.

    PS I love your blog!

  6. Lacey says:

    I agree with your not so good #1. My family and I were just talking about it this weekend. Unfortunately parents are neglecting their responsibilities at home and our schools are picking up the slack and having to raise the children instead. (That may sound like a blanket statement, but it is not my intent. I know many parents who are doing an incredible job raising their children). Until there is a “parenting reform”, the schools have to TRY to do what’s best for our kids, even if it means teaching them how to use a knife and a fork or what a vegetable is. However, there is no substitute for parental involvement.

    One additional comment: I found the way they were measuring if this revolution was successful very funny. I do not know of a child who will turn down pizza and chicken nuggets if they are offered it. The school district seemed to expect a complete turn around in the first week. Of course they will not be thrilled to know that their chocolate milk and pizza are gone…I wouldn’t be! It takes time for change to happen, as you said. Ok, I’m done! :)

    • abbynormally says:

      The fact that you commented makes me unbelievably happy. The fact that every word in your comment is truth and insightful makes me more happy. But the fact that I get to see you in a few weeks makes me the happiest!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We’ll have to stay up later, drinkinging margaritas, playing killer bunnies, and talking about “parenting reform”!

  7. Katie says:

    I definitely agree that teaching a child to use a fork and knife/recognition of fruits and veggies comes from the family. I talked about that in my recaps of the show too (I need to be more succinct like yours though!). I do however, think that school should be reiterating these practices that the family should be providing. Because, like the show displays, some kids don’t have a clue when it comes to these things, so where else where they get that education.. school. It’s unfortunate, but true. I also definitely believe that Jamie is doing this for a good cause and that change does need to happen. I plan to do a post in the near future outlying what the recommendations actually are for school lunches–I think it will give people some insight.

    • abbynormally says:

      I’m really excited for your post about school lunches! My mom and I were talking about Hollidaysburg’s lunches and how Dr. Humphrey really helped clean those up. I’m glad we came from such an aware district!

  8. Jess says:

    One thing that struck me when I was watching it was that some of the kids didn’t even know the most basic veggies. I think that’s such a huge break down in parenting. I mean where are the parents to teach their kids about fruits and veggies. I learned that stuff at home and I think that is definitely a parent’s job.

    • abbynormally says:

      Agreed! Teachers should be spending time teaching multiplication tables, NOT “this is a tomato”!! But I guess they have to if the parents won’t!

  9. Rosann says:

    With each decade comes change some good some bad. We live in a time of instant gratification, so of course what we feed our children would reflect this concept. Finger foods…. quick to prepare, easy to eat, quick clean up. Both parents with careers working full time with no time for meal preparations. I have to agree with Jamie Oliver it takes a village to raise a child and that might mean teaching some basic table manners in school. But I can’t help longing for the good old days where families sat at the dinner table where children benefited with better nutritional foods, dinner discussions-better language skills, and where parents can teach positive behavior.

    • abbynormally says:

      Rosann, this is so insightful! You are right, times have definitely changed. And while the change has brought some really great things, it has introduced somethings that aren’t so good. When my mom was in school, she went home for lunch. Now they are serving kids breakfast AND lunch. OVerall, this change isn’t a bad thing, but one part of it, the loss of health, certainly is!

  10. were did you get the previous episodes from.. somehow I missed them the last two weeks nad would love to watch them and catch up.. its on tonight right… ?

  11. Katharine says:

    Great post! And I definitely agree with a lot of what you said – what Jamie’s doing is certainly admirable but he has a long road ahead of him. Not only do the schools need to change what they are feeding children, but (like you said) parents need to do a better job of teaching their kids to make better choices. I can’t wait to see what this show does! :)

  12. I too am loving the Food Revolution. I do disagree with your “don’t like” #2. Do I think pastors should preach to “not eat McDonalds” or anything that specific… no. But I do think that it is ok to preach about keeping our bodies healthy. Our bodies are temples and they were created to glorify our God. So if we aren’t treating them,like the temple they are, and putting good things into them, we are ruining God’s creation. I don’t think God created us to be obese, and have numerous health issues because of it. I think we are called to love our bodies, respect them, and treat them with care. Is there a pin point biblical verse, maybe… i’m not sure? But I do think that gluttony is a sin, and for many people food can become an idol. Something that is “filling” them instead of filling themselves with God. I think God does care about our physical bodies (obivously not as much as our spiritual body) but still.

    Otherwise yes.. I agree with everything else you are saying! Let the Food Revolution begin!

  13. Ashley says:

    i’m seriously obsessed with Jamie Oliver. now i want to buy all of his books, and stalk him and hug him :) haha. seriously though, he is doing an amazing thing and I truly believe he WILL start a revolution!

  14. Lizzy says:

    Hey girlie!!
    I could not agree with you more on this issue!! I think that the change MUST come from the HOME in order to really make a difference. One healthy lunch at school each day is going to make an impact in the child’s health…but not nearly as large an impact as making sure the child gets a healthy breakfast and nutritious dinner!
    Great review!! I really enjoyed reading it!
    I hope you are having a great week chica!
    ~xoxo!

  15. Melissa says:

    I knowww you posted this a while ago, but I love Food Rev so I’ve been saving it for when I had time to read and comment. :) Jamie Oliver is great and definitely makes the show worthwhile. I love his down to earth personality. He seems genuine, like he really wants to teach America about good food!

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