School Lunches & eating together
Soon it is Back to School time and where many low-income parents are happy that their children are getting a hot meal, others are not so happy about the choice on the menu.
Previously we have visited school dinner menus over the world where we saw Brazil offering rice with beans and fried plantain amongst green fresh leaves. The UK came off the worst offering processed meat, loads of carbs and barely any vegetables.
Prue Leith has suggested this week, that to ban packed lunches could help child obesity, and offering healthy school lunches the key.
Does our diet need to be addressed very seriously? Obviously, it does in a nation of plenty where we rely so much on school meals that food banks are inundated in the school holidays.
Food in the UK has become an issue around class and race
If one was growing up in Africa, every class of family ate the same diet of fresh vegetable stews, and lots of fresh fruit, more or less.
In comparison in the UK., ‘children’s food’ consists of bad sausages, chips and squeezy tube deserts. Menu’s at restaurants also offer the standard ‘child’s’ meal – bangers and mash, macaroni cheese, pizza as though a child can not eat with the adults and share the same food groups.
Finland offers a great model, teaching children 3 hours each week of cooking lessons. The teachers and pupils share healthy lunches together.
Jamie Oliver suggests that low-income parents should cook cheaper cuts of meats, use seasonal vegetable or pulses but do any of them follow this formula…. Probably a very few.
On the other scale of the income, an investment bank has started sending breast milk to hungry babies, so the mothers can continue to work, even though they should be on maternity leave and bonding with their babies.
Eating with children is an important factor in learning what is good to eat and form habits, as well as a social situation, away from screens and social media.