Obama on White House life: A 'very nice prison'

Former President Obama has compared life in the White House to a "very nice prison."

He made the comment on Tuesday during a Q&A session with his former White House chef Sam Kass at the Global Food Innovation Summit in Milan, Italy.

After Kass asked him what he doesn't miss about the White House, Obama initially laughed and joked, "Well, that's a long list."

He then said, "The hardest thing about being the President of the United States is it is unique in its isolation."

See images from the event:

Obama explained, "In part, because of the security apparatus around a U.S. president, you live in what's called 'the bubble.' And it is a very nice prison. So you don't have the freedom of movement to be able to just take a walk or to sit in a cafe because there's always this security concern around you. I don't miss that."

He added, "Now I'm only captive to selfies...which is almost as bad. I can walk anywhere as long as I'm willing to take a selfie every two steps."

His wife Michelle Obama had also previously talked about the confinement of White House life; during a joint appearance with fellow former first lady Laura Bush in 2013, Mrs. Obama was asked in an interview if she ever felt like a prisoner.

She gave the lighthearted response, "No, there are prison elements to it. But it's a really nice prison."