Chef Tells Jenny Craig She Doesn't Want to Be Skinny

Julie GoodwinAustralian celebrity chef Julie Goodwin has turned down a lucrative $250,000 deal with Jenny Craig, saying she doesn't care about slimming down.

She got the offer after comedian Magda Szubanski ended a three-year partnership with the diet company that earned her a rumored $900,000 a year and helped her lose 55 pounds. But unlike Szubanski, Chef Julie isn’t interested in losing weight. She's interested in helping other people eat more -- or at least better.

So Goodwin refused the offer. "I don't want to be thin. I don't want to be anything different to who I am," she explains.


Instead, she became an ambassador for the hunger organization Oxfam. She's more concerned about people who don't have enough to eat. "The idea that the world produces enough food to feed everyone but still one in seven doesn't have enough food to eat -- it's not fair and it's not necessary," she says.

Personally, I think Julie's refusal may also be because being a weight-loss spokeswoman is antithetical to being a celebrity chef and world hunger advocate.

It's a matter of priorities, and if you're a chef, you have to put taste above everything else, including being slim. A chef has to be curious about food -- no matter how fattening. A chef has to be willing to explore all sorts of possibilities.

Maybe Szubanski used to have an unhealthy relationship with food. And maybe Jenny Craig helped her change that for the better. Goodwin doesn’t have a problem with the weight-loss program at all. It’s just that she’s more interested in living well than in shedding pounds. And it looks like her relationship with food is just fine, thank you very much.

What's clear is that Julie loves food in a very healthy way. She revels in seasonal, from-scratch cooking and is staying away from processed junk. And she's still pretty curvy -- though she's working out now to help burn off all those recipes. She's a fantastic symbol of balance between health and the appreciation for food. Saying no to Jenny Craig and yes to Oxfam could make her an even more effective role model.

Are you a healthy eater with extra curves who loves yourself the way you are?

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