1. What should parents know when packing school lunches for their children?
Parents need to always be in the mindset that what their children consume for lunch has an impact on their performance in the classroom and even extracurricular activities. A child who consumes a lunch filled with processed snacks that are high in sugar and harmful fats will most likely be hindered in their overall energy levels and ability to think clearly and focus on tasks given to them in their classes after lunch. Parents should have a mental check list of, protein, healthy fat, high fiber, and fruit/vegetable. Reducing intake of processed foods will also decrease their child’s risk of obesity and development of obesity related chronic diseases.
2. If what they pack isn’t under regulation can it be taken away?
No, schools do not have the authority to take anything from a child but of course they will encourage parents to pack lunches according to new regulations. Eating a lunch that does not contain processed foods will be an adjustment for some families but the goal will result in an overall decrease on childhood obesity and saving families from the chronic diseases associated with childhood obesity, like Type 2 Diabetes.
3. What items will be taken from a la carte menus in schools?
There is not any official approval of any items being completely removed yet, but they plan to start by removing candy bars and sugary soft drinks.
4. What will the biggest adjustment for parents, schools and students be?
The school lunches will contain less sugar, fat, and sodium, with more fruits, vegetables and whole grains. These foods are less processed and some view them as less convenient. There may be more preparation involved behind the scenes, but educating both the children and the parents on the health and school performance benefits of healthy eating should reduce any negative feedback.
5. Is there a list of items that will no longer be served?
Nothing has become official yet, but the items that will be removed first will be sugary soft drinks, candy bars and other processed snacks like potato chips.
6. What must be in an item?
Fruits and vegetables
7. What must not be in an item?
Processed snacks that contain trans fats and sugars like soft drinks/soda.
This is a preview to an article that will be featured in the Ottumwa Courier. Check back for the full article.
Dr. Kantor’s greatly anticipated new children’s book, The Green Box League of Nutritious Justice, is now available. Be sure to order this highly reviewed book, filled with healthy living tips for the whole family. A portion of the proceeds benefit the Children’s Miracle Network.