Everyone seems to be discussing how healthy a school and/or kindergarten lunchbox should be. What should be in them. What shouldn’t be in them. My children’s school and kindergarten are no different. They have their rules on what to have in them which could pretty much be summed up as no junk food, no sugary items, and no wrapper or packet type food. I’m just glad that I don’t have to worry about having no allergy items like many other schools and kindergartens do.
Celine’s school also shares the healthy lunch choices with the children in attendance. Often pointing out in a child’s lunchbox something that they “shouldn’t be eating” because it isn’t “healthy”. Occasionally Celine will come home with some items in her lunchbox uneaten because some teacher or other told her she shouldn’t eat it and it wasn’t healthy for her.
Personally I feel that the healthy lunch message is being heard by the wrong crowd. Anyone who knows anything about Celine will know she’s a very active child. All my children are. Even when Celine spent the entire year on crutches in 2014 due to her Perthes Disease, she spent the entire year racing around on them.
Which means that rather than requiring a low-calorie lunchbox like many of the less active children may, my children actually require higher calorie foods in their lunch boxes to meet their energy output levels. This is my dilemma. How to provide my children with enough calories to meet their needs and still have a reasonably healthy lunchbox to meet the teacher’s requirements. It’s a pain in the neck let me assure you.
So I don’t. If I followed all the lunchbox rules that Celine tells me the teachers have come up with each day as an excuse not to eat her food, my children would never put on weight and would instead lose it. I don’t know about you, but my children can’t afford to lose weight. There is no fat layer on them at all. They don’t even pudge up before a growth spurt. They just stretch overnight like pulled taffy.
So instead I focus on putting foods into my children’s lunch boxes that they actually enjoy eating. There is always a sandwhich or two and at least one or two fruit for the “healthy” factor and then I add in whatever I like. Some days there might be crackers or chips or popcorn, other days it could be biscuits or a piece of cake. Heck, some days I add more than one treat. Recently it’s been homebaking; a muffin, some biscuits, a peice of fudge. Whatever it is that I’ve made the day before or have available to put in.
Which means some days I have more arguments with Celine over the lack of eating her lunch than others. I actually had to sit down with her and discuss what it is she thinks is healthy and isn’t healthy according to her teachers and then explain to her why her needs are different to what the teachers are trying to deal with the healthy lunchbox message.
I get that there are a lot of children at her school who are overweight and probably eat far too much junk food and fast food. But they appearently aren’t hearing the message. Instead my boardline underweight daughter is. Something which is potentially dangerous to her health. I already struggle with her obsession on being skinny. Getting her to put on any weight is a mission as it is. She can’t afford to lose any.
I do applaud the school for trying to get their students healthy and active. But I do wish they’d butt out of my child’s lunchbox.