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Gerrard and Oliver urge cooking classes

8th May 2012

Footballer Steven Gerrard and chef Jamie Oliver have joined forces to ask the government to tackle the problem of obesity by educating schoolchildren about food.

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The two celebrities have added their signatures to a letter addressed to the Prime Minister which suggests that children aged between four and 14 should be taught about food and cooking.

Dr Clare Gerada, chair of the Royal College of General Practitioners, Christine Blower, general secretary of the National Union of Teachers, and Professor Terence Stephenson, president of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health also signed the letter.

They wrote: "As a group of charities and leading professionals in the field of medicine, food, sport, education and cookery, we firmly believe that the impact of obesity on our health is a very serious problem." 

Professor David Haslam, chair of the National Obesity Forum, who was another of the letter's signatories, said: "The 2012 Olympics provide a unique opportunity to improve the nation's health and reduce the burden of obesity."

"However, sitting in front of the television, cheering our elite athletes on, while eating crisps and chocolates, drinking sugar-sweetened beverages is entirely counter-productive." 

The letter said that the obesity problems in the UK would be best tackled by children being taught how to make healthy meals.

The Department of Education said it was already carrying out a review of the National Curriculum and would make a statement in the future about the issue. 

 

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