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Healthy lunches are about quality over quanity

Posted on Oct 13, 2014 by Maggie LaBarbera

When I was growing up, I pretty much ate homemade lunches.  We did not have a regular school lunch.  I remember a couple of friends who sometimes did not have lunch.  I was young and really did not think much about what this meant to these kids.  I don't even know why they did not have lunch.  

Maybe they couldn't afford lunch?

Maybe their parents did not have time to make the lunch?

I really don't know but I do remember sharing some of my sandwich with them.  Just because I felt bad that they did not have anything to eat.  I think back now and wonder how that affected them academically and socially?  

School lunch is one of the three main meals for children.  This is a very important meal to feed and fuel the body and brain for afternoon learning.

Originally, with so many children not having lunch because of economics, the government started the National School Lunch program to make sure these kids were fed.  A child that is hungry is less likely to focus on learning when their stomachs are calling out for food.

I think at first the lunch program was more about quantity.   The goal was originally to ensure kids had a lunch that was affordable to make.

Now, we have looked at the quality of the food which is just as important if not more than the quantity of food. Fast forward to today, where lunch now has some sound nutritional guidelines in place.  We want to feed children foods that are healthy and balanced so the brain is optimized for learning.

School lunch programs are in over 100,000 schools and child care institutions.  It feeds over 31 million children each day!  That is a lot of kids that are getting a healthier lunch.

Review of key improvements:

  • Ensuring students are offered both fruits and vegetables every day of the week
  • Substantially increasing offerings of whole grain-rich foods;
  • Offering only fat-free or low-fat milk varieties;
  • Limiting calories based on the age of children being served to ensure proper portion size; and
  • Increasing the focus on reducing the amounts of saturated fat, trans fats and sodium.

I just want to say "Thank you" to our president and members who passed the improved nutrition lunch program.  Bravo to President Obama and our first Lady, Michelle for standing up to the scrutiny and sticking to the goal that the nutritional quality of the school lunch was just as important as the quantity.

Nourish Thought for the Day:  

Be part of the solution, not part of the problem.

For those parents who do make their kids lunch, here are some helpful tips for ensuring a healthy lunch at home and at school!

Packing a Healthy Lunch Box…easier than you think!

Parents Guide To Making a Healthy Lunch For Kids

Tips For Parents - What To Do When Children Won't Eat Their Lunch



1 Comment

Monday, Nov 03, 2014 @ 06:31 AM

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An instructive post. People to really know who they want to reach and why or else, they'll have no way to know what they're trying to achieve. People need to hear this and have it drilled in their brains.. Thanks for sharing this great article.

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