Food Revolution Day

Food Revolution Day
Food Revolution Day

In eleven days time, Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Day 2015 will kick off all over the world. It is a cause close to my heart because I am a proud Ambassador for Food Revolution Day and I am a parent to three young kids. With their mum being a Dietitian, our kids have grown up learning how to make healthy food choices and why an active lifestyle is important. The thing is, not everyone has access to this kind of hands on practical education at home or even at school. This is evident in the current global obesity epidemic with 42 million children under the age of five either overweight or obese.  As a Dietitian I find these statistics staggering and that is why next week on the 15th May, I will be side by side with the children at Deanmore Primary School helping them prepare a Squished Sandwich, Jamie Oliver style with millions of other kids around the world. Jamie Oliver is doing everything he can to make a difference to the health of our children through food. With his trademark passion he is encouraging us all to support his mission through signing a petition to get some action in governments around the world and I am right behind him. His letter galvanizing our action is below.

“Hi guys, Jamie here I urgently need your help to make a real difference. We’re currently facing a global obesity epidemic, with 42 million children under the age of five either overweight or obese across the world. The bottom line is the next generation will live shorter lives than their parents if nothing is done to rectify these alarming stats. So I’m asking that you do two simple things – first, please sign this petition to show your support for compulsory practical food education in schools across the world, then, most importantly, share it via your social networks. It;s essential that we arm  future generations with the life skills they urgently need in order to lead healthier, happier, more productive lives.  I passionately believe this is every child’s human right and I hope you agree. If you can help me get millions of people to sign this petition, we can create a movement powerful enough to force all G20 governments to take action.  Food education will make a difference to the lives of the next generations, so please help. I can’t do it without you. Sign it, share it and let’s inspire governments to do the right thing. Big love Jamie Oliver x “

For more information on Food Revolution Day go to I would love each and every one of you to join me. What are you waiting for? Sign it. Share it.   

Shampoo makes you fat – doesn’t it?

A couple of weeks ago, a story hit the media which I commented on during my segment with Paul Murray at 6PR radio.  The concept of shampoo being a cause of obesity was flung about and it appears the offending fat promoting chemicals in particular are known as phthalates.  Phthalates, phthalates, phthalates (trying saying that three times quickly) are found in everything from shampoo to toilet cleaner to perfume to canned food tins and there a number of international studies currently looking at our everyday, cumulative toxin exposure.  I am not discounting the importance of minimising toxin exposure in our bodies but just in case you were getting excited about throwing out your shampoo and never needing to exercise again,  sorry. ‘Chich’ of Churchlands in Western Australia had the best solution I thought. Here is her response to the claim that shampoo makes you fat. “Its the shampoo I use in the shower.  When I wash my hair, the shampoo runs down my whole body.  Printed very clearly on the shampoo label, it reads, FOR EXTRA VOLUME AND BODY. I have gotten rid of the shampoo and I am going to start using Dawn dish detergent. Its label reads, DISSOLVES FAT THAT IS OTHERWISE DIFFICULT TO REMOVE.  Problem solved and it sure does pay to read the label.” It just keeps coming back to that irrefutable equation, In vs Out, In vs Out….. with not a single drop of shampoo in sight.

Rising Sea Levels

Whilst flicking through my local community paper last week I came across a very clever Letter to the Editor.  Mr Dick Percsy of Swanview was quite the comedian. According to Dick, “Media reports suggest that 60 per cent of Australia’s population is overweight or obese.  Other expert reports indicate rising sea levels. Is it possible that these two factors have bearing on each other?  In other words the continent is sinking due to the excess weight of the population and is threatening Perth’s beach-side suburbs.”

Take a Stand

What do Leonardo da Vinci, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson all have in common? Aside from the fact they were all of the male variety and just a bit famous, these guys were said to have used stand-up desks. Winston Churchill, Vladimir Nabokov and Ernest Hemingway are other notable standers.

So? Well, it would seem that standing more might help you live longer. In a new study of more than 100,000 men and women from all across the United States, those who sat for more than six hours a day were more likely to have died – mostly of cardiovascular disease – over the course of the 14-year study than those who sat for less than three hours a day. This relationship held true even among those who exercised regularly. Earlier studies have shown much the same thing.

I know that sitting in front of my computer for extended periods of time gives me a headache pretty regularly and my back aches too. On the other hand, standing for too long, or the wrong way, can cause sore feet or knees, low back pain, stiffness in the neck and shoulders, and other health problems. I know when I am waiting in queues I have the tendency to lean on my right leg and have to keep reminding myself to stand up straight.

Standing does burn more calories, strengthens leg muscles and keeps the blood flowing.  I tried it this week while teaching the 16 members of the Western Australian Institute of Sport Men’s Waterpolo team, which includes both state and Australian players. It was good fun and I found myself teaching some budding Master Chef’s and then others just learning the basics.  Either way, everyone gained a new skill or two, all integral to World Class performance.  With training sessions morning and night, it can be tricky to fit in a spot of cooking. Sometimes all we need is some basic skills, an idea or two, online shopping and recipes that only take 15-20 minutes.

But back to Winston and Leonardo.  Try standing for a change and it might just enhance your daily performance.

Cooking up a Storm
WAIS Men's Water Polo Team Cooking up a Storm

Operation Sugar Storm

Who would have thought that little white grains could cause such a ruckus?  There has been a loud roar around Australia this week, with the new marketing campaign for CSR Sugar starring Olympic Medallist and world record holding swimmer, Eamon Sullivan. The advertisement showcases Eamon behind a kitchen bench in his birthday suit, with his private parts cleverly hidden by a mixing bowl.   Continue reading “Operation Sugar Storm”