Tasty choices: Kids enjoy food that’s really good for their health.AS CHILDREN return to schools across the state this week, the all too familiar routine for parents of packing school lunches will also return.
But with many tasks to do during the early-morning rush, lunch boxes are often filled with unhealthy and packaged foods.
Now a program in western Sydney is aiming to have more healthy lunch boxes in schools.
Eat It To Beat It, run by The Cancer Council, involves free workshops being offered to parents at their child’s school, on what foods to pack for lunch.
The program has been running in Australia since 2008 and was extended to schools across western Sydney last year, with schools including Mt Druitt Public School and St Bishoy Coptic Orthodox College. The program’s nutrition project officer, Emma Ringland, said the program aimed to make decisions for parents easier.
“We help parents navigate the often confusing world of lunch box snacks, recommending they look for fruit and veg in season [and to] avoid packaged foods,” she said.
With recent NSW Health statistics showing only 8 per cent of adults eat the recommended five servings of vegetables a day and 53 per cent eating the recommended two servings of fruit, Mrs Ringland said parents’ food habits were passed on to their children.
“It’s virtually impossible to get the right amount of vegies in your diet if you leave it all to dinner time,” she said.
“School children eat more than 2500 lunches in their 13 years in the playground — we see that as 2500 opportunities to eat fruit and vegetables.”
The program’s facilitator, Badera Qashou, knows all too well the struggle of finding the balance between food her children want and healthy snacks.
With three of her five children still at school, she said packing lunches could be difficult.
“The big problem is that kids look at each other and always want to copy what they eat and they want all this junk,” she said.
After speaking to parents across western Sydney, Mrs Qashou said many didn’t know which foods were healthy.
“Sometimes they have an idea about what’s good and bad and sometimes they don’t — which surprises me,” she said.
Mrs Quashou said there were many different options for parents who want to pack nutritious lunches for their children.
“Sandwiches with wholemeal or multigrain breads are always good; you can always have some fruit or some salad to go with it,” she said.
“Many children have juice to drink but having only water to drink is very important.”
Details, more tips: cancercouncil南京夜网419论坛 /eatittobeatit.
This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.