Have you ever heard the term “Food Desert?” It’s a place – usually in an urban setting – where there are extremely limited options for healthy food. Usually, you’ll find a McDonald’s or Burger King in these areas but nothing that offers people within any sort of vicinity the fresh vegetable and fruits they need to keep their health in shape. And these Food Deserts are inevitably in areas with low-income families living in poverty.
Celebrity Chef Jamie Oliver knows all about poverty and what it can do to a family. She grew up without much and now has come forward to educate people about what it is really like growing up in an economically disadvantaged family.
Oliver, who lives in the United Kingdom, believes that impoverished people need better access to better foods, now. But all too often, they’re stuck eating fast food and other junk that destroys their health and puts them at risk of many deadly conditions including heart disease and cancer.
Recently, she stood up to an MP and advocated for a British sugar tax that would increase prices for junk food that are high in fat or in sugar content. These food items are usually targeted toward poorer people because they’re cheap to produce and are highly addictive.
“This is a tax for good. This is a tax for love. This is designed to protect and give to the most disadvantaged communities,” the celebrity chef said.
Although Oliver is trying to stand up for something she believes in – since she came from an impoverished situation herself as a child – her critics were quick to scour her menu to find that she offered a dessert that was loaded with sugar.
Her Cookies and Cream drink have an estimated 46 teaspoons of sugar, which contains a little more than a 12 ounce can of Coca Cola.
Nevertheless, Jamie Oliver hopes that as part of the campaign called #AdEnough, she can change the way we think about food and our health. She really is taking aim at how food, especially sugar and fatty foods, are advertised to little children, making them desire these dangerous items that increase the risk of obesity and diabetes.
She is “asking is it appropriate to advertise food that is high in salt, fat, and sugar to children at prime time when obesity is crippling” the country. She makes a good point. Cigarette companies no longer can advertise their products because they caused a national health crisis and killed countless people. Sugary foods are following a similar trend. Should they still be advertised to little children who are at the highest risk of suffering from health complications?
On social media, Jamie described her success, “What a day yesterday was! I took #AdEnough to the Houses of Parliament with Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall to discuss childhood obesity. It was a great start to the conversation, but I really need you to keep sharing your selfies so we can keep this going and get the government to make change happen to the way junk food is advertised to our kids!”
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