so today, robert was out running and i did something i rarely do...i turned on morning tv...to gma and there was paula deen cooking up some of the unhealthiest desserts i could imagine...or even she could imagine (but then again, she did, right?). now nothing personal. paula is a nice woman, even though her southern accent gets more pronounced and louder each season.
after watching i got to thinking. you can turn on any number of cooking shows and be entertained...and even learn a thing or two about cooking...regardless of whether i like what they are cooking most of the time.
but what is the responsibility of tv chefs to the health of this country? like it or not, approve or not, tv chefs have become rock stars and while that's weird, it's true. some, like jamie oliver are using their celebrity to effect change. he works tirelessly to get better quality foods offered in the public schools in england. great work! he also works with underserved kids to give them a chance in the restaurant business...all good...for the world and jamie's karma.
at a time of life when obesity is an epidemic; when diabetes is hurtling through the population both young and old; heart disease and cancer are killing us in record numbers, isn't there a responsibility on the part of chefs who claim to teach us to cook to teach us to make healthier choices? i am not advocating all chefs turn vegan, although that would be nirvana. i am suggesting that perhaps whole sticks of butter along with heavy cream and sugar may not be the best examples of the way america needs to eat. surely, in the case of most of these chefs, one look at the size of their bodies and their bloated faces tells you that they do in fact, practice what they preach, such as it is.
look, i know this is a free country and people may say and do as they like. it's what makes us americans. but on the other hand, anyone who holds themselves up as experts have a responsibility to teach people to make choices that help them, not make matters worse. and you may say that all these cooking shows are just entertainment, but are they? cookbooks sell like mad (mine included...) so people want to cook like the chefs they love. i am just not sure that they want the bloated obesity that goes with that adoration...and i am quite certain that so many of these chefs need to re-examine their message and get on board with helping this country through the health crisis that has made health care such a burden. so much of the disease that plagues us is lifestyle based and can be avoided and alleviated if we just made healthier choices.
if people changed their diets, health care would reform itself.