Facebook Pixel

Childhood Obesity: Students Don't Want Healthy Foods at School

By HERWriter Guide
Rate This
Diet & Nutrition related image Photo: Getty Images

My own children's school has switched to the Jamie Oliver menu along with a salad bar but still has a traditional menu - of greasy, salty rubbish. The Oliver menu is good, the rational fare is pizza, fries, chicken fingers, hot dogs and burgers. Ironically - tragically - that menu is designed by an actual nutritionist. Really?


So we brown bag it and allow a pizza lunch with salad bar once a month. The kids love the brown bag lunches -- it's all they've known and any fruits or vegetables they don't eat at school they bring home, and eat for dinner. I don't know how long that kind of honesty will last but it works for now!

The Los Angeles School District implemented a new regime in their schools' cafeterias by eliminating all the fast food choices and focusing on healthy fare including fruits, vegetables, salads and entrees like vegetable curries, lentils and brown rice and leaner sources of protein.

Since this implementation, the schools have noticed a huge increase in food waste, with whole trays of lunches being thrown out and students saying they are suffering from general ill-health due to the new menu, including headaches and stomach pain. Rather than eat the new menu choices, students instead elected to buy burgers, fast food, pop and candy that is being sold on the down-low by other students.

The schools have now done an about-face and have brought back in pizza, burgers and the old fare that has been instrumental in increasing obesity in American children. But the pizza will contain low fat cheese and low sodium sauce.

Perhaps serving the "old fare" in a healthier way is the better option. Burgers on whole grain buns and healthier toppings, salads with low fat dressings, all beef, lower sodium hotdogs and healthy yogurts for dessert.

School children will not want to suddenly start eating healthier , more "exotic" style foods that are totally foreign to them. But they will gradually get used to their own style of foods that are slowly and quietly made in a better, healthier way. Non-"all-American" foods can then be slowly introduced.

Tell Us
What do you think of school lunches?

Add a CommentComments

There are no comments yet. Be the first one and get the conversation started!

Enter the characters shown in the image.
By submitting this form, you agree to EmpowHER's terms of service and privacy policy

We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

Diet & Nutrition

Get Email Updates

Diet & Nutrition Guide

Have a question? We're here to help. Ask the Community.


Health Newsletter

Receive the latest and greatest in women's health and wellness from EmpowHER - for free!