In the novel Lunch Wars, Amy Kalafa, points out we need to teach our children the fundamental importance of good food. “Developing a sense of taste is not just for food snobs. The connection between healthy food, healthy soil, and healthy kids is made through the sense of taste. Teaching children to taste real food at a young age enable them to discern junk food as junk.” It is this food advocacy that needs to be prevalent in more schools. In this novel she teaches for parents to advocate for their children’s health through research, policy planning, and taking the step forward to speak your mind.
As I read Lunch Wars it made me appreciate the elementary school my children attend for its stringent nutritional guidelines. It offers a nutritious hot lunch program offered once a month in which the meal is made from scratch from local resources. It is in this health food initiative in which children learn the benefits of eating good slow food.
The school also has a plot in the community garden were children participate each spring in the garden club learning how to grow vegetables. It’s these initiatives that teach my children between the taste of a carrot from a fresh garden in comparison to the bulk bag from the super store.
It is teaching our children the benefits of healthy eating and how to make wise choices with their food options. As my children grow,gain part-time jobs, I won’t be able to hold their hand our control what they consume on a daily basis. But to ban junk food completely from schools doesn’t prepare them for the real world. As they grow older we need to helicopter less and hope they do make the wise choices. However, if my child is eating a balanced diet I see nothing wrong in enjoying a cup cake every now and then.
Balance and moderation are key to a healthy diet. As our children grow we need to advocate for healthy meals offered in the high school cafeteria. I also know as parents we need to start the education early in the homes because it is not the schools responsibility to monitor our children’s diets. However, we do need to find balance within the schools to create and provide more healthy options besides pizza and fries.
Do you think schools need to take a more healthy approach to the meal selections they offer? If, so why? Also check out more about Lunch Wars at BlogHer Book Club and join the lively discussions!
This was a paid review for BlogHer Book Club but the opinions expressed are my own.