Obesity is a leading preventable cause of death worldwide. To address it, Jamie Oliver launched the first-ever, global Food Revolution Day which took place in 620 cities around the globe and brought a focus to food education.
As part of that effort, Google hosted a Hangout that included four participants from around the world which I was asked to moderate. And while we were all excited about the opportunity, none of us had any idea just how profoundly the event would impact us.
We were asked to join early in the afternoon to get to know each other. There was a mother in Malaysaia who led an allergy and eczema support group, a woman in Australia who is an inspirational blogger, a bestselling New York Times writer who is a professor at Vanderbilt University and a father who is a chef that teaches cooking classes to families in California.
And of course, there was Jamie Oliver. And when he joined us just before the event was about to go live, we were all a bit speechless, because like millions around the world, he'd touched our lives in such monumental ways, giving voice to the concern we share for the health of our families and loved ones and building a platform, a Food Revolution, upon which we could all engage that we truly did not have the words to convey the gratitude he is owed.
And as we began the dialogue, the conversation quickly became very sincere and authentic. He spoke honestly, "The pressures on a modern day mother are immense." And so did we, with Shane, the chef in California, at one point suggesting that instead of asking why real food is so expensive, we should be asking why the processed stuff is so cheap. It was such a powerful point, especially in light of the fact that according to the United States Department of Agriculture that packaged foods are the source of 26 percent of the added sugars in our diet.
When Jamie was asked what his favorite "go-to" meal (a question that many were curious to know the answer to), he started moving, as if he'd been put in the hot seat, and we realized that we might as well have asked him which child he loved the most. An impossible question to answer.
When we asked him what people can do to get started, if they are a little bit scared but have is this incredible love of their families and passion to do something, his answer was to "gift" something -- to make something that you love for someone else and share it. To make whatever you are good at -- salsa, a full meal, baked goods, anything -- because that love will come through.
And as we continued through the conversation, which lasted just over half an hour, we were continually reminded, through the stories shared and the insight revealed, that perhaps the most important ingredient in this Food Revolution is love. And that together, leveraging our collective talents, if we do what we can, where we are, with what we have, we will create the changes we want to see in the health of our families -- one meal, one family, one incredibly inspiring conversation at a time.
To join Jamie's Food Revolution or if you just want to thank him for starting it, please visit www.JamiesFoodRevolution.com
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