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Wednesday, March 24, 2010


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really? physical education is being removed from schools??! that is insane.


I SO AGREE!!! I also think kids are smart... if they're taught about good nutrition, and they are served good food, they'll eat it. What kid doesn't like fresh fruit??? My kids love vegetables... why? Because I've fed veggies to them since they started eating solids, and always told them they were good. I would LOVE to see healthier choices in the schools. Both of my older kids often choose the salad bar at school (which still isn't as nutritious as it could be...iceberg lettuce, but they still choose the healthiest option). Go Jamie Oliver!!!!!

sarah sue

I also agree! And I think Mike and I have our parents to thank for giving us good habits with fresh fruit and veg and wholegrains. Our girls enjoy them all too. I think it is about learning as well. Since living in Asia, everything I know has been turned inside out. There is even a Chinese version of the food pyramid that I found out about on line. Its not that the rules are different, but the choices available are different. Interestingly there isn't much processed food available, even our fridge rarely has stuff in it because we buy everything fresh each day. Not sure about the chemicals and hormones though. It's hard to tell what the situation is with that.


Great Post Dear! I love Jamie he's the Naked Chef! Kids love it when we 'Feed them Better'. I loved 'raw' vegetables growing up, still have memories of running out to our small family garden and ripping a carrot out, dusting it off and chomping it down!

Sarah Lewis

Very well said Jen! When Alex started attending full day this year I quickly realized that he would be taking a lunch from home each day. The lunch menu for his school looked pretty much like the one on the show. It's sad that that is the "norm". I definitely have had to tackle my own bad habits over the past few months as I learn about food and how much it affects you. Still a lot to learn, but my biggest prayer is that many more people start to learn and make better choices. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!


Oh Jen, I love you! I completely agree...although I will admit that my son will NOT each fresh fruit. He is completely fine with vegetables, but he doesn't like fruit except for an occasional apple. It's not from us not feeding him fruits as a baby/toddler, it's something about the texture I think. Anyway, I don't completely buy the idea that kids will eat good foods just because they have been educated on how good they are for them. That is not an excuse to serve them bad foods though...I just think it has to be forced sometimes. =) This whole issue is one of the reasons we chose the pre-school we did for our kiddos. They have a full-time chef who makes lunch each day from fresh (and almost always organic/natural)ingredients. Sometimes I wish I was eating lunch at their school on Tuesdays and Thursdays!

I also wanted to add a little to your discussion. It's my understanding that these "calorie minimums" in public school breakfast/lunch programs actually did come from good intentions. (This is not meant to excuse the fact that schools are filled with over-processed, under-nutritious food, but I think it helps us understand that the gov't did not intentionally decide to feed kids unhealthy food from the beginning. And I won't tell you where I stand on health care reform for fear that my comment will be completely dismissed! =). Because most kids that were eating breakfast at school were not getting adequate breakfasts and dinners at home, the goal was to give kids the calories they would need for the entire day in these two meals in case they didn't get dinner at home. Now, obviously this has been taken too far when fresh vegetables do not meet these calorie minimums, so schools serve fried foods or add sugar to everything. A change definitely needs to occur.

My last comment - we cannot expect change unless we are willing to pay for it. We all know how much more expensive buying all organic produce is (this and education are why families in low income brackets tend to eat the least amount of fresh food), so we must be willing to pay more in taxes for education if we want public schools to change.

And physical education in schools - so sad that it and the arts are not emphasized. I guess the sadder issue, is that kids don't tend to play outside and get excercise after school at home either. That's why Carter will probably be attending a charter school when he starts kindergarten...so we can choose one that focuses on other areas (definitely the arts!) more than public schools do.

Thanks for the post Jen!! I love these types of discussions!



I disagree with the statement that all families have the "right" to wholesome food. (If this is a "right"- will it lead to taking children away from those who don't feed it to their families?) Is that "life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness?" If so, how far do we take it?
I guess I like the idea of living in a free country. (And explain to my kids- as I heard a teacher explain to his students- that we are free to do whatever we want because we live in America. We have to realize, however, that we also have the "right" to face the consequences of our choices.)
Should people be better educated about food choices? Yes. Should school lunches be more nutritious? Yes. Perhaps information about the effects of bad eating habits should be more readily available to people. (It can be time consuming to try to figure it all out for yourself- perhaps that hinders some?) It does cost more to eat healthy- but if it isn't a priority that comes before entertainment...then people won't make healthy choices.
As parents we (hopefully) try to make the best decisions for our children. We don't feed them bad food thinking- "why should they deserve better than those who can't afford it?" Is not this the same reason we may home school our kids or look into other schooling options. It is not so much that we think our kids deserve better- just that we want to give them what we think is the best for them.
A year or so ago I realized that I was sinning in the area of my food habits. Perhaps it was laziness- yep, that was it. I drank chocolate milk every day myself. Now the kids talk about the time when their mom thought chocolate milk was healthy. :) "Mama, why did you used to think chocolate milk was healthy?" Truly I felt that I needed to seek forgiveness in this area- repent of bad eating habits and seek to please God in this area of my life. My newest addiction is fresh juiced carrot apple juice- possibly with spinach thrown in the mix. (It doesn't compare to my sister's healthy vegetable juice with beets, celery, etc.) We all probably have room for growth- but it must really come down to a matter of priority. If you spend your money early in the month on healthy foods...you just don't have as much to spend on junk (or clothes, or entertainment)and you make do.

What would be really helpful to me, Jen, is if you shared all the things you have learned about healthy eating. (What is best to buy organic, what doesn't really need to be. Recipes you like. Things your kids enjoy. How you have set your priorities in grocery shopping. What foods you have found (in research) to cause (contribute to) cancer or diabetes.) If you shared once a month on the subject the things you are learning... the rest of us could grow with you. Maybe some others could comment with what they've learned. We could grow together in this way?

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