How Much Whole Milk Can My 1 Year Old Have Childhood Obesity and School Lunches – How to Put Your Child’s Lunch Under Remote Control

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Childhood Obesity and School Lunches – How to Put Your Child’s Lunch Under Remote Control

The school lunch program: parents hand over control of child nutrition to the federal government and school boards

“Kids are too fat now, partly because they used to be too thin” – The School Lunch Programs

School time, including travel to and from school, dominates a child or teen’s day. Parental control at home evaporates as soon as the school bus leaves and doesn’t return for eight or more hours. The hours after school become a dangerous time for eating and drinking due to the fatigue and low blood sugar experienced by many children and teenagers. The parent, who is also tired and often overworked, can easily give his child the bad snacks he sees on television. Whether it’s a bad school breakfast, a bad school lunch or a school-sponsored vending machine, parents have handed over control of the child’s and teenager’s food and drinks not only to the school, but also to their 7-year-old child!

The school lunches offered to your children may differ by school district, by region of the country, and depending on whether the school is public or private. Some schools only have cafeterias and provide standard school lunches, while other schools have a la carte foods, fast food kiosks or even student shops. Comparing how large groups of children eat lunch, twice as much fat is found in buffet lunches as in bag lunches (lunch brought from home). Total fat and calories are even higher when students buy food a la carte because they often choose two, three, or more items, and often the “wrong” items.

Where did school lunch programs begin:

Undernourished and malnourished families and children became widespread in the United States in the 1930s. During the Second World War, conscripts were regularly turned away because they were malnourished. Seeing this problem, President Harry S. Truman pioneered the school lunch program in 1946, which guaranteed a hot lunch to all schoolchildren who could not afford it. Thus began a plan that 60 years later contributes to today’s obesity epidemic!

Changing school lunch programs:

Programs have changed over the years, and in the 1960s free and reduced breakfasts were offered. The government deals with the school food supply, buying surplus products from farmers and sending them to the schools. School lunches generally exceed national recommendations for fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, and calories. While the quality has improved somewhat in recent years, fresh fruits and vegetables are generally lacking. A sample of 24 public high schools in San Diego County, California. found that almost 50% of students at a school with a student shop or a la carte facilities bought mainly sweets, cakes and pastries, and significantly less fruit and vegetables.

School lunch program:

Here is a 2005 presentation by the USDA Food and Nutrition Service entitled “School Meal Program Performance: What Do We Know?

o 94,622 schools (90% of public schools) participated in the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), serving 49 million students.

o 4.8 billion lunches were served in school canteens.

o NSLP serves more than 29 million lunches, 9 million breakfasts and 154 million after-school snacks

o About half of the lunches and 3/4 of the breakfasts are served free of charge.

Children from low-income families can get more than half of their daily caloric intake from these meals. Fresh fruits and vegetables are not an everyday place in homes, they can be found in school lunch stalls. Nutrition education can give students the tools they need to make healthy choices about food and physical activity.

Mindless school lunches vs packing lunches from home:

Children, teenagers and their parents can buy lunch at school or bring it from home. The choice should depend on what kind of food the children get for lunch. The typical school lunch is often much higher in calories, carbohydrates and fat than it should be. This means that the parent should take a close look at the cafeteria lunch menu, which is available a week or two in advance in most school districts. Here’s what to look for in school lunches:

  • What to eat: Sandwichessubs, wraps, vegetables, fresh fruit, yogurts
  • What to drink: water, low-fat or fat-free milk, zero calories, fruit-flavored waters
  • What NOT to eat: fried foods, meat, pasta, pizza, rice or potatoes
  • What NOT to drink: whole milk, sugar-laden fruit juices, soft drinks, sports drinks

On the other hand, the lunch prepared by the parents is not always healthier than the one bought at school. If parents pack cookies, cake or potato chips, it is not nutritious food! But if the parent does it right, packed lunches have a clear advantage. When you pack your kids’ lunches, you know your kids and teens are eating the “right foods”—things you know they like. Remember, you’re not around at lunch, so you almost have to remote control their food.

Talk to your child or teenager:

Make sure they like what you send for lunch. Better yet, take them shopping and hear their opinions. By stocking up on their favorite healthy foods, you can save money and have a healthy baby.

Here are some quick lunch box tips:

o Easy-to-open small packages that children love. It has to be done quickly. Remember, lunch time should not be more than 15-20 minutes.

o Toddlers may not eat much in one sitting. Consider packing appetizers instead of a large sandwich and whole banana. You can enter more than one choice if the quantity of each is smaller.

o Small meals are not only easier for children to handle, but they are also more enjoyable to eat. Cut sandwiches into smaller pieces, small sandwich buns, and fruits or vegetables into small bags. Do not overload the child with anything large.

o Some children are content to eat the same thing every day. This often drives me crazy with habits. Don’t worry as long as the food is healthy

o Instead of making sandwiches, consider wrapping individual sandwich ingredients so your child can make their own sandwich for lunch or eat ingredients separately.

o Cereal bars can pack a lot of nutrients into foods that kids love to eat.

State-of-the-art insulated lunch boxes and bags on the market with built-in food safety features: thermoses, a space for pre-frozen gel packs, even pockets for wet wipes

Children and teens need to make good decisions at lunch:

Whether you make better choices by bringing food from home or choosing from school cafeterias, it really doesn’t matter. Parents should understand that they cannot check their child’s food until 8:00 a.m. after the school bus leaves. School menus should be constantly reviewed and the parent should monitor the selections. When eating school lunch, the child needs to learn how to make the best selection from the range available.

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