March 25, 2010

LKL BLOG EXCLUSIVE: Ryan Seacrest on childhood obesity

Posted: 04:52 PM ET

Programming note:  Tune in tonight at 9pm ET / 6pm PT when Ryan Seacrest and chef Jamie Oliver speak to Larry about their new show, “Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution” and how they are trying to help one of the unhealthiest cities in America. 

Below, Ryan shares his thoughts on First Lady Michelle Obama’s campaign to take on childhood obesity.   It's a Larry King Live web exclusive...

By Ryan Seacrest

I think it is so fantastic that First Lady Michelle Obama has launched a campaign against childhood obesity. Countless statistics have shown that childhood obesity is a national epidemic and demonstrate that today’s kids need to eat a healthier diet and live a more active lifestyle.   It’s shocking that the current generation of U.S. children could be the first to live a shorter lifespan than their parents. 

I hear concerns from parents everyday through my radio and television shows.  I believe that if you want to be successful in life, you have to give yourself the proper fuel, which means eating well and exercising. This is how I keep up my pace. I support and applaud all of Mrs. Obama’s efforts on this issue and the 'Let's Move' campaign, which aims to educate both parents and kids about the importance of exercise.

I recently teamed up with U.K. Chef Jamie Oliver, who is a champion of health and nutrition programs, including improving community school lunches in his home country, in an effort to further the dialogue on this issue. I stand behind Mrs. Obama and will do my part through my platforms to help further the national conversation.

Editor's note: "Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution" premieres Friday March 26 on ABC.  Click here to view a clip of the new show...

Filed under: Jamie Oliver • Larry King Live • LKL Web Exclusive • Michelle Obama

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mummer   February 9th, 2010 10:17 pm ET

maam u and your betterhalf The President r what amrican folks need to make your country a better and maybe the best country in the world barak seems to know we need no conflict over petty grivences

K.O.   February 9th, 2010 10:20 pm ET

I do believe that obesity is a problem in children and adults in America , but I think a lot has to do with the fact that good, healthy food is very expensive and the junk and processed food is so much cheaper. As a mom on a food shopping budget in this economy, it cost me more to buy healthy food. I want my family to eat well balanced meals and get plenty of exercise. I think that our government needs to encourage healthy eating habits by making the produce and other healthy foods more reasonably priced and make the "junky" food more expensive.

chaney, La.   February 9th, 2010 10:23 pm ET

I am glad that our wonderful First Lady has chosen to tackle this problem of obesity.......and I am also very proud of Mr Obama.....

Navajo Joe   February 9th, 2010 10:33 pm ET

We consume far more than our nutritional requirements and the estimate could range as high as 300-400 percent more than our needs. Look to your left to your right and into a mirror and you may see at three reasons for millions of empty belly's.

mary ca   February 9th, 2010 10:45 pm ET

A wonderful lady

Cindy   February 9th, 2010 10:52 pm ET

Where is the parent responsibility in all of this? You keep blaming schools....Its not a school problem in the beginning it starts at home.

As for lack of recess....No Child Left Behind eliminated that due to all the requirements for testing....and instruction time in class.

I am a teacher....

Jo-anne, ga   February 9th, 2010 10:52 pm ET

I agree that we need to make changes in schools but we need to start sooner – we need to change meals provided in daycares. They provide 2-3 snavks and lunch each day. We need them to provide healthier and FRESH food and not canned food.

Karen   February 9th, 2010 10:55 pm ET

Have you eaten in a school cafeteria lately that abides by current guidelines? The school lunches are now awful. Foods are often not cooked on sight, are preprepared and often in tiny portions. In our efforts to include all appetites, foods are very different than you may think!

arline robertson   February 9th, 2010 10:57 pm ET

I remember when I was in school they came early and cooked good meals and we had milk not soda . today they have very little food that is cooked it appears to be brought in. and they serve soda .

ED   February 9th, 2010 10:59 pm ET

Di not Mr Crosby halk Jello Pudding for years.

Barbara   February 9th, 2010 11:01 pm ET

I think the lady who says junk food is cheaper does not know how to use her brain. It is cheaper to cook and take time to make healthy foods. It is not the responsibility of the government but the parents. This is ridiculous to spend "billions" to inform people how to feed their children. Not the school's responsibility either. We could use the money in other places than more programs. Our country is in debt and this is a waste of time. Even McDonalds as choices in their happy meal..apples, yougurt, milk...It is an individual choice. I grew up poor and was healthy.

Jo-anne, ga   February 9th, 2010 11:03 pm ET

Great Karen!! – I guess that means I will be making my kids meals until they are in Grade 12. I provide my kids food at daycare now thanks to a letter by daycare but I guess I will have to continue when they go to school if things don't really change.

catherine brady   February 9th, 2010 11:11 pm ET

I appreciate the efforts of your First Lady- very commendable-however I also listened to Bill Cosby and the co-author of his book. It amazes me that the thought of " a family dinner" is so foreign. I walk the aisles of a grocery store every at least 3 times a wek and am apalled by the lack of education of most shoppers. To comment that it is more expensive to buy fresh food is ridiculous. What is apparent is that nobody has taken the opportunity to teach people how to manage a budget and a household. Whatever happened to Home Economics 101 for both genders??How can buying a Lunchables at over $4.00-okay I'm Canadian and it may be slightly less in the US- for one meal make more sense than buying fresh cold cuts and a loaf of bread that would do for at least 4 lunches? Wake up folks- you are being sold a bill of goods. Realize the fact that you are lazy and can't be bothered to invest the time or energy to make a good wholesome meal for your family. It is easier to go through a drive-thru ant 6:00 than to hunker down over a stove. Forget programming your kids- if you are lucky enough to afford to do so – into 14 different activities. Who are you doing it for? Ask your kids. They want your time not your money–that comes later when they are older!! Take the time- give up an activity- Shocking but true most of them t are not going to be NBA. MLB of NFL stars – pick one activity – spend time with your kids and feed them properly.... The rewards are well worth it- Hell they may even end up liking you.........
Sick of excuses in Burlington, ON. Canada

Kelly C   February 9th, 2010 11:13 pm ET

I think it is great that celebrities ar stepping forward to discuss issues that are important to our nation, especially when it come to nutrition and obesity. However, when discussing statistics and strategies about nutrition... talk to the expert!!! A Registered Dietitian. They are trained and qualify to deal with issues related to nutritioin better than a celebrity!

Mike Borg   February 9th, 2010 11:25 pm ET

In countries like Sweden and Finland, Floorball is used during PE/gym and recess as well as in after school programs.
Floorball is a team sport – more common than basketball over there – and it provide youngsters with a fun, safe, inclusive and good physical work out.
The introduction of Floorball to the US school system would be a new important and maybe crucial tool to fight obesity and improve youth health.
Problem right now, is that no one hardly knows what Floorball is here in the US.
So please do your self something good, be one of the first to look it up on-line!

James31   February 9th, 2010 11:44 pm ET

@catherine brady
You are right on many points. It doesn't have to be cold cuts even. How about peanut butter and sugarless jelly sandwich once in a while. I have this discussion often with members of my family who think it is unaffordable to eat a nutritious diet. I can't speak for everyone, but in this case, they simply don't try.

Judith   February 9th, 2010 11:49 pm ET

I applaud Michelle Obamas efforts to make sure all children have access to healthful foods and physical activity. However, I'd encourage her to take a focus on weight out of the equation. As I talk about in my recent blog post DEAR MICHELLE, an imagined conversation with Michelle Obama, there are children who are thin who do not eat healthfully or who use harmful dieting practices, and there are kids who are large, even though they eat fruits and vegetables and participate in physical activity – genetics and other factors play a role in weight.

Unfortunately, this intense focus on body size will have unintended effects on children related to self-esteem and shame. Even if a child is normal weight, the message is clear that if they gain weight, they will now be unacceptable.

I am also bothered by the statement that children of this generation will live shorter lives than their parents – there is no science behind it. This is based on a statement made by S. Jay Olansky in the New England Journal of Medicine with no statistical evidence to support it – when questioned about the validity of these statements in an article in Scientific American called Obesity: An Overblown Epidemic (June 2005), he replied, These are just back of the envelope plausible statements. We never meant for them to be portrayed as precise." In fact, if you really look at the science, people in the overweight and low end of the obese categories actually live the longest (see research by Katherine Flegal of the CDC)

Lets promote health for children of all sizes!

Bridget Swinney MS, RD   February 10th, 2010 12:25 am ET

I applaud Michelle Obama for making Childhood Obesity her platform. But unfortunately, Bill Cosby and his psychiatrist co-author had more airtime on the topic. Really-is that the best that CNN can do for experts on childhood obesity? "Come on People!" Bill Cosby is a great comedian and advocate for children, but he is not a health educator qualified to discuss the body's use of insulin! (you could have brought out any number of Registered Dietitians who are "real" childhood obesity experts.!)

There were definite inaccuracies in their portrayal (blame) of childhood obesity. Get the facts! USDA regulates school lunch–there are fat, calorie and nutrient guidelines and programs to get more fresh fruits and vegetables on the lunch line. (Not to say that the guidelines can't be improved upon, because they can.)

Soda machines in schools–how about giving some examples of positive change? Soda hasn't been in Texas Elementary or Middle Schools for years now and are also being phased out in high schools.

In El Paso, parents and community leaders are working hard and succeeding at turning childhood obesity around. As former chair of the School Health Advisory Council for the EPISD, I can say that change is possible. For example, we developed Healthy Snack Guidelines for PTA's to use as guidance for fundraising. We also made recommendations for minimum suggested time for PE and recess and for mandatory health education in middle schools.

School Health Advisory Councils (SHAC) are required in every school district in the US–and the majority of members must be parents. This is something parents can do that can actually make a difference. Work through the SHAC and recommend to the school board that they get rid of sodas. Or ban the PTA from selling unhealthy snacks after school.

Bridget Swinney MS, RD
Author of Healthy Food for Healthy Kids

Alley, Fl   February 10th, 2010 1:23 am ET

I think it has become a necessity to bring the obesity problem to the National level. MIchelle Obama is correct when she states it is not about getting "skinny." Reducing obesity is about getting healthy and preventing all the health risks associated with it.

If children understand the reason why good nutrition is important they will self-regulate themselves. The point is making the information accessible to our children. In a perfect world all parents would take on this responsibility. We don't have that luxury, so we need another means to inform our children.

This is a great start and we all need to rally to the cause.

Trish   February 10th, 2010 9:54 am ET

Unless fruits & vegetables are purchased in season do you really think fresh???? produce is sooo healthy. Strawberries purchased in Dec. trucked thousands of miles is not example of any benefit in my opinion. People talk about how expensive nutritios foods are–if 99% of the junk food was eliminated from many shopping carts then a family would have a little more to spend on the basic food groups,

Roberta   February 10th, 2010 10:03 am ET

If parents would stop scheduling their children's lives so,people don't have to eat in the car enroute this lesson ,that sports practice they actually might have time to have a sit down family dinner. If parents would put the word NO in their vocabulary it would help. No,you don't need chips,M&M's right dinner is in 5 sec. If someone in that family knew how to prep. & then turn on the oven,stove top (not the microwave) it would be a step in the right direction.

Darcy   February 10th, 2010 10:11 am ET

Survey to children--show a group a bag of chips,doritos,m&m's,french fries, chocolate bars-99% know the names Show broccoli,zucchini,brussel sprouts,kiwi,plums-how many would be recognized-35&!!!

Larry Marcheschi (Markeski)   February 10th, 2010 10:50 am ET

I believe that obesity in the US is in part due to poor labeling on food packaging....Specifically, the caloric content of beverages and food as reported by 'Calories' is very misleading. The word is often spelled out completely, or abbreviated as 'Cal', but always with a capital 'C'. That's because the capital 'C' signifies 1,000. A can of soda-pop labeled as having 100Calories, actually has 100,000 calories (spelled with a lower case 'c)'.
In Europe, that same can would be correctly labeled as having 100kcal, which is 100,000 calories.
As a chemical engineer, I know that a calorie is a very small amount of energy. The definition of a calorie is ' the amount of heat required to raise the temperature of 1 gram of water 1 degree centigrade'. One(1) gram of water is about a few eye drops. Dieters and parents shoul be aware of this fact and not dismiss the intake of certain foods as having "only 100 Calories'. Also, a can of soda-pop would not sell if it were labeled as having 100,000 calories. So, mass media advertizing of fast food and mis-leading labels are significant culprits of obesity in the US.

Mzrocknroll   February 10th, 2010 11:06 am ET

Thank you Mrs. Obama.

Ted   February 10th, 2010 1:09 pm ET

Larry Marcheschi:

You sure got your math mixed up!!!
100C means what it says: 100 calories!
With 1,500 – 1,800 daily calories needed by an average person, according to your math a can of soda would feed a person for about TWO MONTHS!!! That is a very potent soda, let me know the name of it.

Another mistake, C means hundred, not thousand.

Ciao amico, bon fortuna.

Ted   February 10th, 2010 1:13 pm ET

According to several different statistics the USA spends the lowest percentage of their income on food in all western countries!
If you want it cheap you get junk food that will kill you.

Roberta   February 10th, 2010 1:50 pm ET

So,some people think athletes & celeb. are good rep. for this cause. I agree as long as their motto is do as I say not as I do. (anorexia,steroids, & cosmetic surgery are not my idea of healthy living!)

Sustainable Energy Man   February 10th, 2010 3:31 pm ET

simple cure for childhood obesity is to tax sugar and fat, use proceeds to subsidize healthy food and childrens sports. DO it!

Larry Marcheschi   February 11th, 2010 1:36 pm ET


It is you who have your math mixed up. If the same can of soda-pop is labeled as having 100 kcal in Europe, the Capital 'C' translates to '1000'. The capital 'C' here is NOT to be confused with the lower case 'c' which does mean '100'.

This is precisely my point: most people do not understand the labels, as you apparently do not as well.

I was only trying to educate.

In engeneering, a BTU equals 254 Calories, which can also be written as 254 kcal or 254,000 calories.
( Furthermore, in engineering, some refer to 'Cal' as a large calorie, and 'cal' as a small calorie).

Larry Marcheschi   February 11th, 2010 2:18 pm ET


In my previous math example, I should have stated that 1000 BTU =
254 Calories = 254 kcal = 254,000 calories.

See what I mean??? Just like your math teacher said in school...
'Watch your units!!'

A. Smith, Oregon   February 11th, 2010 11:54 pm ET

There are approximately 900 diseases which occur to anyone that is missing essential nutrients in their diet. American corporations have long ago removed many essential nutrients from the ground directly by its massive and rapid use of American corporate farming practices.

No amount of 'correct diet' is going to help you 'one single bit' if the food you are eating doesn't have the essential nutrients everyone needs.

The FDA is fully aware of this and began programs to supplement livestock feed with essential nutrients so that COWs and other livestock thrive and live much longer, disease free than without those supplements. How about doing that for the American Taxpayers?

Why isn't this encouraged and federally provided for to American Citizens? The American Medical Association and Western Medical Practitioners, MD's and their masters in Big Pharma derive much of their income from treating diseases resulting from a chronic lack of essential nutrients in their body's.

A. Smith, Oregon   February 12th, 2010 7:23 pm ET

Hasn't there been enormous amounts of research on rodents that were fed inadequate food that was lacking essential nutrients?

They eat a great deal more than normal because the FOOD they were given didn't contain enough essential nutrients their body's needed.

American corporate farms grow carrots that have the essential nutritional equivalent of cardboard. You'd have to eat 10x the amount of their 'cardboard' before the body receives what it would need, vs a single organically farmed carrot.

There are approx. 900 diseases which greatly benefits Big Pharma, The enormous American Medical Association, Huge Health Insurance Giants ALL coming from people whose diets are missing essential nutrients. This explains the WHY.

trm   February 12th, 2010 8:13 pm ET

Has anyone seen the tv program where Jamie Oliver changed the school cafeteria diet? Quite interesting-the parents were part of the problem. It's understandable why the children fought change but I think the parents fought equally. Mr.Oliver persevered.

T., Cincinnati   February 13th, 2010 9:06 pm ET

It appears poeple want to find something wrong with everything the President and the first Lady try to do. My Goodness!!!!! The real issues is about the parents of obese children. Most of the time, if you see an obese child you see obese parents. These unhealthy eating patterns are taught to the children. I do not blame the first lady for making sure her children are within the normal BMI range for their age and weight. There are studies that demonstate obese children grow up to be obese adults with multiple health problems. We see more children today with hypertension and diabetes than ever before. Children may not ever like or understand the desicions their parents make. They surely appreciate their parents decesions when they become adults. If not, you've failed the most improtant job you'll ever have.

J L   February 15th, 2010 11:43 am ET

I think that this issue is very complex. It has a great deal to do with poverty and the types of foods that are in our North American grocery stores.

If you can't afford healthy options like organic produce or fruits and vegetables then cheaper processed foods full of fat, high fructos corn syrup (sugar), and preservatives are your go to foods.

If you can't afford organized sports programs you are out of luck. Our kids want to spend more time in front of the computer and video games than they want to outdoors. Our nieghbourhood is full of kids who we never see!

I think it's up to us as parents to set healthy examples for our kids and make sure they are getting what they need, but the governement has a responsibility to ensure that we can afford these things for our kids. Not just the rich should have healthy options. Not too many rich fat people out there are there?

Donald Allen   February 15th, 2010 4:37 pm ET

Donald L Allen it about what is right it about what is wrong the rules unExpectable the crook.s well take and then if that is not night they just add more unjust to it no more right four me to be a crook then it is for them to be a crook so what do you do about them what can you say about it is right four them to collect Cooke all day long and do what they please with your date ta well you no how I field and you no the low set forth is Illegal and you no it not right so were do we go from here what do we do about it the way I see it the police or not acceptable nor the term so I don't up date I don,t agree and four me it the end of the store so now what do you think about it it your weird that mite make a big diff see you Donald L Allen

Sam   February 16th, 2010 10:09 pm ET

It's funny that the first lady didn't touch on the most important and overused ingredient in American food, which has been documented for several years to be the root cause of the obesity issue.

High Fructose Corn Syrup, Corn Syrup, Corn Syrup Solids, are in just about everything. Bread, Yoplait Yogurt, EVERY BRAND of ice cream, honey, juice- I'm talking regular grape or apple juice from concentrate, Campbells soup, various sauces. The list goes on and on.

The reason corn products in food is causing a serious obesity and health epidemic is because corn syrup/corn syrup solids/high fructose corn syrup BLOCKS a very important chemical called Leptin, which tells your brain when you're full. Since the ingestion of Corn sweeteners does not allow this chemical to function properly, this means that you never know when you ARE full.

Knowing this, and knowing that this dangerous sweetener is in almost everything that Americans eat, I think it's safe to say why everyone is fat.

Nancy   February 24th, 2010 6:43 pm ET

I'd like to see Ryan Seacrest go to the grocery store and see how much fruits and veggies cost. These celebrites are in their own little world and don't know what it is like to be poor and live in a poor neighborhood. I can't afford to buy alot on what I make. I have to buy cheap food for my income.

Kathryn   March 23rd, 2010 11:13 pm ET

McDonalds is the best fast food restaurant in the world and gives us choices. We can eat healthy and lightly there if we try. My son who is now 27 has not ever been obese. He literally ate only McDonalds chicken nuggets and hamburgers and hamburgers at another nearby his high school hamburger stand for over 7 years growing up. He also had a lot of exercise during those years by skateboard and intramural sports at the high school level. He is not now obese and quite possibly may never be obese. I became obese on home cooking by my mother. My mother was a good cook who loved the natural stuff and was a food pusher. We were the boomer clean plate brigade. Our parents did not allow us to "waste" food.

I did not become obese until I was over 48 but I am now obese. I still eat mostly natural slow cooked foods. However a good way to work up a sweat has eluded me so I remained nearly the same weight for over 14 years. Yo Yo dieting brought me to obese. I walk for exercise.

Guess what I am saying is that there could be a genetic predisposition to obesity.

Bill   March 25th, 2010 7:03 pm ET

3. OPEN HIGH SCHOOL AND COLLEGEGE TRACKS TO PUBLIC when not in use by the school. Many high schools and colleges keep their tracks locked up and do not allow the public to jog there, such as Ramapo College in NJ. So instead of jogging in a peaceful, scenic, environment where it it easy to measure distance and progress, they force you onto the street where you can get hit by a car and get shin splints. Selfish.

Bill   March 25th, 2010 7:08 pm ET

Nancy, if you were smart you would shop at Costco where fruit and vegitables are much cheater and fresher than grocery stores.

Joe G. (Illinois)   March 25th, 2010 8:19 pm ET

Mr. Ryan Seacrest I have got to inform you that you are in no condition or place to be praising others in such regards..
To put it simply..
You sir are no better off than the Obese.. Nor the Anorexic.

Is Gluttony worst than Vanity?
Is Vanity better than Gluttony?

Gluttony can lead to obesity, heart disease, diabetes, etc.
Vanity can lead to shallow empty lives keep alive only by the paparazzi and the media, and to drug abuse and overdose, etc.

kate Jones   March 25th, 2010 9:27 pm ET

Kudos to you and Jamie for your attempt to get kids eating healthy food. With the knowledge we now have this generation should live far longer than their parents and grandparents. Jamie's enthusiasm for cooking real food makes me want to go throw a salad together every time I watch him. If anyone is going to enthuse kids to cook and eat healthily it will be Jamie!!

Debra   March 25th, 2010 9:51 pm ET

The school lunch program is only half of the problem. The federally-funded Universal Breakfast Program is the other half. That program brings "free" breakfast meals to all children in participating schools, regardless of income. But the meals are comprised of empty calories in Pop Tarts, sugar cereals, and fruit juice with little or no nutrient value. For budget-conscious school officials, the Universal Breakfast program means extra dollars that subsidize the school meals program – at the expense of our children.

ahachem   March 25th, 2010 9:51 pm ET

parents need to be educated and whole food has to be made affordable and people should grow their own vegetables it's so much cheaper than storebought. Just taste a homegrown tomato............

ahachem   March 25th, 2010 9:52 pm ET

people should eat what their great grandmother would recognize

vallary   March 25th, 2010 10:40 pm ET

This is so true kids, and parents need to eat better. and we need to all move. but, also need to work on the improving the schools to better kids, top cutting their to build kids self esteem. When they are going to get bullied at school. or not go home to anyone or even a house. I think this is a bigger issue as well. I am all for the good food but, I am also looking at the bigger picture.

sandy wood   March 25th, 2010 10:55 pm ET

Thank you Larry King for having Ryan Seacrest and Jamie Oliver on your show tonight. We all need to support them and Michelle Obama in their efforts to bring attention to our epidemic of obesity in our children. If our children and adults were healthier and not obese, we wouldn't be in such a crisis with our health care. We shouldn't be taking so many prescription drugs and having to go to the doctors so much. As a child I only went to a doctor a few times. We ate all of our meals at home and everything was cooked fresh. I was very fortunate to take Home Economics for four years. My teacher was wonderful. She was way ahead of her time. We learned how to cook at home and school, but she taught us everything about nutrition. I still remember it to this day, fifty years later. Someone said they couldn't afford nutritious food and I realize it's hard, but if we cut in half the amount we are eating (and most of us need to) the cost wouldn't be so much. Compare the price of a bag of chips (unhealthy) to a bag of apples and it's about the same. We had fresh brewed tea for dinner as a child and still do. Compare that to soft drinks. They are expensive and full of sugar. I could go on and on. I hope Oprah, Good Morning America, The Today Show, and Dr. Phil will have Ryan and Jamie on their show. Knowledge is powerful. We all need to become involved to save our kids.

Caryl Greep   March 25th, 2010 11:00 pm ET

We need celebs to bring full attention to this terrible problem of obesity and other health problems in our country because the big moneyed groups won't listen to the average citizen. HOWEVER, let us be aware that right now Senator Harkin of Iowa is trying his best to pass a bill #510 that will make our food LESS safe and healthful for all of us and he doesn't care. Jamie and Ryan need to go speak to him and get him to drop his Draconian bill all together. He has sold out to Big Pharma and Big Agribiz who want total control over what happens to our cows, cattle and food. They want to pump all cows with horrible growth hormones which are not good for any of us and cause much disease. They want all cattle injected with antibiotics and then we all eat that meat, irradiated and all. Pay attention people to what the idiots in Congress want to do to your food. Wake up America. They also want to do away with small farmers, so there goes our local food and jobs. They want you sick and fat so you think you'll then need to take Big Pharma's side effect laden chemicalized drugs. It's called power, money and greed. They don't give a whip for our health, least of all our kids. It's sickening and we must do all we can to support Jamie and Ryan's Revolution. Speak up for healthy, clean non- GMO food, support local farmers, organic should be cheaper cuz it isn't covered up with expensive pesticides that cause illness and death. How stupid are we America? Pay attention to the big money players. Jamie is right. A prisoner gets better food and more money per prisoner than our future, the children of America. Parents too must do a better job and get kids off the couch, away from their precious electronic toys and play outside and exercise. Let's do this and save all our health. Demand more from DC and the Congress. They don't care about us, really as evident for many, many years. They only care about their next election.

kelly   March 25th, 2010 11:47 pm ET

@ Joanne, ga-

Bring a lunch!! Bring a lunch! !make your kids lunch the night before-Have them help! DO NOT give them money for cafeteria and what ever is going on in the parking lot at the high school.

My parents were working class, blue collared workers-my mom stayed home till I was 14-she made lunch for us daily and we walked home for lunch and back to school over noon break. Then, because she went back to work, she made bagged lunch the first year of high school- After that, I had to make my own lunch-like EVERYONE else. I still remember it-ham sandwich or tuna sandwich, an apple, and a milk. As I got older (and the catholic school got funding for a cafeteria in grade 12)-I occasionally ate lunch at school-trying to watch my weight I drank diet Pepsi a lot (not a good choice)-but I also got a job down the road so I had my own spending money-but NOT until I was 16 or 17 and by then, I didn't want chips or pizza at lunch.

My point is this: -yes,you have children and are busy. You can make them a lunch everyday and when they are 10-they can make their own lunches. If you have children, you are responsible for what they eat, It does not matter if you give them money for lunch or if you make it. YOU are responsible. Quite frankly, its best and cheapest made from home. If they can dress themselves, hang out independently with their friends, and if they can wash dishes-they can make their own lunch-you control the food and the money-not them.

Then when they are 15 and don't have $10.00 in their pockets "for lunch", you won't have to worry about their nutrition or what else the $10.00 is buying.

Caroline   March 26th, 2010 12:26 am ET

Everyone in America should watch Jamie Oliver's is eye opening ! The overall message is "get back into the kitchen". Sit down and enjoy food around the table...What happened to the Waltons ? Take a page out of all those US series where families sit down and eat proper food. Real food is easy when you avoid the centre of the supermarkets.
AVOID HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP...It should be banned. As Sam says it is one of the root causes of obesity.
America, you can do it ! Yes you can !

W   March 26th, 2010 3:10 am ET


krys   March 26th, 2010 4:58 am ET

Nancy February 24th, 2010 6:43 pm ET

I'd like to see Ryan Seacrest go to the grocery store and see how much fruits and veggies cost. These celebrites are in their own little world and don't know what it is like to be poor and live in a poor neighborhood. I can't afford to buy alot on what I make. I have to buy cheap food for my income.

Are you really that small minded to think Ryan doesn't know what its like for the average and below average person these days? I listen to his radio station and watch his shows and see his passion to help others. However you may feel about his tv personalities is your own business but to mix that you with his true self is not only unfair but judgemental on something you have no clue about. Sure he is rich now but it hasn't always been that way. His involvement is to promote and help a friend out that wants to make a difference and pay it forward to improve eating habits and menus at the schools. Whatever the situation you are in there are loopholes to change your mindset on what you can afford and not. You can make shortcuts till things change for you financially but to blast a guy for trying to make a difference and assist someone who is less rich/famous is just wrong. It's not his fault, its not my fault or anyone elses here and maybe even not yours that you can't afford or THINK you can afford valuable and healthy foods. You have to have the wilpower and desire to make a change which I assume you would want to do otherwise why would you not only click this link but post on here? Be angry, be upset but try a little understanding too.

bobby   March 26th, 2010 6:58 am ET

It is simply a myth the fresh foods are more expensive that fast food, and prepared foods. Make a pot of chicken soup. All you need are two chicken thighs, celery, onion, carrots, and whatever other veggies you lik. Perhaps some macaroni. You can feed you family on this healthy soup for less than 5 dollars. What would you pay for four Happy Meals. Further, once you become accostomed to real cooking, all of the processed stuff tastes absolutly horrible.
Hats of to Jamie Oliver, and of course our First Lady.

nuno   March 26th, 2010 7:54 am ET

I totally agree with whatever Ryan and Jamie's saying.People who i know go through obesity and i know how bad they feel so i am gonna step up and make them understand and just ...SPREAD THE WORD!!! like how Ryan, Jamie and Michelle is doing and oh yeah,GO AMERICA!!!!!

Ted   March 26th, 2010 9:36 am ET

America, the great, has about 30% obese citizens and it is the 23th hour for us to attack this disabling and eventually killing habit of eating and drinking too much.
It is also about time the average american family learn the value of good and healthy food, because it will shape your whole life and is much more important than having a new car every two years!

Americans do not make less money than the europeans do, they just spend it differently. The constantly going shopping habit kills those dollars that could be used to buy better vegetable or fruits.
Cooking at home will provide a much better food cheaper than spending the same money at McDonald or Burgerking eating junk.

If you do not like to cook buy a chinese or thai cookbook, it has many receipes for excellent and healthy dishes that you can do in 30 minutes. Discount stores offer fresh food at effordable prices, or use deepfreeze vegetables, never from the can, because it has very little vitamins left.

Ted   March 26th, 2010 9:41 am ET

It is ironic that an english cook has to teach America how to eat well, as it is well known they have the worst kitchen in Europe, and their fish and chips dish is just as junky as our hamburger with french fries!

If he could learn than we can, too!

J.Allen Queen   March 26th, 2010 4:36 pm ET

Ryan, please count the leadership and schools iinvolvedin our IMPACT Childhood Obesity programs to be behind you and will assist in getting every principal in the United States to sign the petition.

Dr. J. Allen Queen, Charlotte, NC
CoFounder of IMPACT Childhood Obesity
National Conference on Childhood Obesity, July 20, 21 UNC Charlotte

J.Jernigan   March 26th, 2010 11:54 pm ET

Ok, I am very concerned over what I have read and watched because the problems of obesity in America does not start in our Schools it starts in our Homes. We do NOT sell Soda's in the School sytems for students at all. I cannot speak for all schoojs but i can say that ours is up to code with USDA. So in conclusion I would like to defend our cafeteria staff and let you know that they do ecxactly what is needed for the staff and students .

Kate   March 28th, 2010 9:31 pm ET

Thank you. I think this is a great thing Oliver is doing. I am a Register dietitian and my colleagues and I have numerous discussion about the issues with our food & nutrition program in our school system. There is lack of nutrition program in our school due to financial challenges. There is limited acess to nutrition education for our population especially the low income in this country due to funding. In addition, general public and government do not understand that it is the Registered Dietitians who have completed proper education and internship programs could provide proper counseling and education to the public. The nutritionists do not necessary have the proper training to do so. You see more promotion of processed food on TV and almost none promotion of healthy eating. Unlike big food manufacturing companies, community and government organizations do not have that funding to promote wellness and healthy eating to the public. I am very glad to see what Oliver and the TV program production are doing for our population.

Kate   March 28th, 2010 9:49 pm ET

Ryan, forget to thank you as well. Great show!

healthy mom   March 28th, 2010 9:53 pm ET

There is an all natural, healthy snack made with simple ingredients called Gudernoobs. The company that makes them is WooHoo Foods and they are trying desperately to get them into schools so that all kids have a chance to eat quality food. Kids are loving them, the only problem is the resistance from the adults. Why are the adults, who are supposed to be advocates for children, so resistant to change?

Ken Leebow   March 29th, 2010 12:27 pm ET

It's a great show. Sometimes you just have to laugh at the American food culture…take a look. I’m sure you will be laughing when you watch these videos and you just might change your eating habits:

Anna   March 29th, 2010 9:39 pm ET

Ryan I think what your is one of the greatest things that could be done for our children, however I do have a question I am a mother of an amazing 8year old boy who has been battling obessity since the age of 4 spending almost half his life in a hospital setting nearly loosing his life 4x and halfing to tb intibated 2x Francesco has once again fallen into what they consider crisis mode recently being released from the hospital with once again no answers and no weight lose we have are at our end, we have reached out to numerous talk shows, professionals and alsmost everybody but we have gotten not one response I think its sad that as Americans we pretend to be interested in our children but we infact continue to push this why I consider one of the deadlest epidemics to hit the AMERICAN CHILDREN, we have had every door slammed in our faces because the severity of his obessity.

M Tyree, Arizona   March 31st, 2010 5:03 pm ET

The First Landy is an extention of the President. The President loves being in control of everyone's lives.

When is Big Brother going to leave us alone?

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