Locals review "Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution"
"Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution" focuses on Oliver's efforts in Huntington in 2009 to promote healthier eating habits by encouraging food preparation from fresh ingredients. Those efforts were focused on local schools, families and a kitchen to teach people how to cook. Each week, we will have local residents weigh in on the episodes.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Dr. Harry Tweel on the final episode

Dr. Harry Tweel is the director of the Cabell-Huntington Health Department.

The final episode of the Jamie Oliver’s food revolution not only shows the difficulty of addressing an entrenched cultural problem; but how it is tied to the whole national system from the USDA guidelines and rules to an individuals personal choices for themselves & their families.

In the 1930’s & 40’s, the problem was under nutrition and the carryover solutions led to the development of cheaper, high calorie fat and sugar rich foods. Then two parents in the workforce left the perception that healthy cooking was too expensive and too time consuming.

Jamie’s final show says that Huntington is aware of this local and national problem: but still has many obstacles to overcome. His challenge to keep the revolution going gives Huntington the opportunity with his national public focus to keep the effort alive. We should continue and become the poster city….”Huntington, we are the food revolution!”

How can we do this? First, pull the community together. By trying to be the outsider bringing change to us, Jamie overlooked the Appalachian West Virginia culture. We need to correct this by engaging the local community & professional groups who are and have been dealing with these issues to support a unified community effort. Second, with this combined community wide approach, we can demand and with the help of West Virginia’s federal legislative influence change the USDA’s guidelines and rules currently being debated in Washington to require healthier school lunches.

Let’s use Jamie’s initial national push to make Huntington a leading example of the way to a healthier tasty lifestyle for our children and ourselves. Yes Jamie “we can demand more."