Value of School Lunches and Healthy Meals

 

Okay, so we have already looked at the history of the school lunch and seen how it is necessary to combat hunger. In fact, in the play we can see how school meals are a necessity for some students, such as when Tino is forced to leave home, making him dependent on school for food. And we probably all understand how hard it is to focus with your stomach growling and  you are watching the clock begging for time to go faster and the lunch period to begin. And we have all been given the spiel about how important it is to eat three square meals a day. Some of the people reading this may really understand how helpful school lunches can be and thank whatever holy power they do or do not believe in for that. But, there is more to school lunches than just making sure we do not go hungry. In truth, school lunches: provide key nutrients, limits fat intake, prevents obesity, and boosts energy as well as grades. Yes, school lunches make you do better on your report card!

Like said before, it really is hard to concentrate on your work when you’re trying to watch the clock to see when the next time you can eat. Well, more and more people have taken notice of that especially when this is something that happens to practically every single living human. So, it should be no surprise that a 2008 study for the “Journal of School Health” found that hungry students to not do as well as well fed students. But, an interesting fun fact of the 5,000 student study was that children who ate more fruits, vegetables and proteins with fewer calories from fat performed better on literacy tests than the children with a high-fat and salt diet. This is why school lunches are monitored by the government to ensure that they are balanced leading to the meals limiting fat intake and preventing obesity.

This, of course, does not make the school lunch infallible. For instance, some of the people reading this might know how in 2011 Congress revised the agricultural appropriations bill to make it easier for pizza sauce to count as a serving of vegetables (yes, this is actually a thing that really happened).

 

 

So, yeah, there are always two sides to a coin, but that does not doubt the importance of the school lunch.

 

New York City Unveils Universal Free Lunch in Time for the First Day of School

An online article was published on www.chalkbeat.org on September 6, 2017 about New York City offering free lunch to all public schools, regardless of income level. The program, entitled “Free School Lunch for All,” went into effect the first day of school. The program allows an additional 200,000 students eligible for free lunch.

The Free School Lunch for All program finally ends the battle between NYC Mayor Bill DeBlasio and City Council who have been urging him to make good on his campaign promise.

Liz Accles, Executive Director of Community Food Advocates, had this to say about NYC’s new lunch program, “We’re erasing all the terrible history of the school food program — not just in New York City, but nationally — that has divided children by income. This is a new day.”

 

Sources:

"5 Reasons You Should Care About School Food." 5 Reasons You Should Care About School Food." September 2, 2014. http://www.projectbread.org/news-and-events/news/5-reasons.html?referrer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com%2F.

Fisk, Michelle. "What Are the Benefits of Healthy School Lunches?" LIVESTRONG.COM. May 31, 2015. http://www.livestrong.com/article/289100-what-are-the-benefits-of-healthy-school-lunches/.

Kliff, Sarah. "No, Congress did not declare pizza a vegetable." The Washington Post. November 21, 2011. https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/post/did-congress-declare-pizza-as-a-vegetable-notexactly/2016/04/01/95bbbe3a-13f6-11e1-9048-1f5352187eed_blog.html?utm_term=.0c1af45bee7b.

“New York City Unveils Universal Free Lunch in Time for the First Day of School.” September 6, 2017. www.chalkbeat.org