Getty Images file
Jamie Oliver in March 2012, on left, and in 2006 on right. The photo on left was one of those that sparked controversy over the chef's weight.
British celebrity chef and TV host Jamie Oliver has worked hard to ensure that schoolchildren in both the U.S. and his native U.K. eat nutritious meals, hosting "Jamie's Food Revolution" in the U.S. and "Jamie's School Dinners" in Britain.
But when his own eating habits were questioned, Oliver wasn't too happy about it.
Less-than-flattering photos taken upon his arrival in Australia provoked a journalist to ask if the chef had gained weight recently.
"I don't know. I am very healthy," Oliver said, according to Australia’s Herald Sun. "Are you from a tabloid? Thank you for noticing, you b----."
Oliver later explained his irritable sentiment by admitting he’d had a late night out drinking with some friends, and wasn’t thinking straight when he made the comments.
"My brain did not quite understand that question,” he said.
Known for his 30-minute meals as well as his nutritional advocacy campaigns, Oliver unleashed the “Food Revolution” series in an effort to curb America’s obesity problem, and won an Emmy Award after the show’s first season in 2010.
He was in Australia to launch the first Australian Ministry of Food, a school providing free cooking lessons and healthy-eating education.
Despite his good intentions however, the famed culinary expert admits a heavy work schedule can be a challenge to his fitness regime.
“I do my best,” Oliver told reporters. “Working in the food business is quite hard when someone is constantly asking you to try things…I eat fresh, I train twice a week. I could definitely do better, but I am trying to do my best like most people when they hit 30.”
Oliver's U.S. spokesperson, Kimberly Yorio, told ABC News, “I can say for a fact he hasn’t gained any weight. They were bad pictures.”
Fans have risen to the chef's defense. A column on Yahoo UK urges critics to "leave him alone!"
And on the ABC article, reader Holly writes "Does skinny always equal to healthy? No. He’s a man that loves his food and I’m sure eats well. I think he is an inspiration to others and is fighting for our children to eat healthier, live longer and generally be in good health. You shouldn’t criticize this man, you should learn from him."
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