Studies show that children who eat a nutritious breakfast function better. They do better in school, have better concentration and more energy. Many children eat one, if not two, meals in school each day, making nutrition an important part of school life. These tips can help you consider how to offer the best nutrition options for your child.
- Learn about what your child’s school is already doing to support nutrition. Ask the school cafeteria manager how often fruits and vegetables are available as a la carte options for students.
- Most schools regularly send schedules of cafeteria menus home and/or have them posted on the school's website. With this information, you can plan on packing a healthy lunch on the days when the main course is one your child prefers not to eat.
- The body needs carbs (sugars), fats and sodium, but they should be eaten in moderation. Too much can lead to weight gain and other health problems.
- When packing your child's lunch or going over the lunch menu, encourage him or her to select healthier choices.
- Remember! Each 12-ounce soft drink contains approximately 10 teaspoons of sugar and 150 calories. Drinking just one can of soda a day increases a child's risk of obesity by 60%. Choose healthier options (such as water and appropriately sized juice and low-fat dairy products) to send in your child's lunch.