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Get ‘junk’ out of child lunch boxes urged

TEACHERS have enough on their plates without having to add their students’ nutritional welfare to the menu but they’re sick of the way sugary junk is affecting kids’ learning.

Lidcombe Public School Principal Nicole Monk says the school is even seeing a large number of children coming to school with no food or drink or not enough in their lunch boxes to get them through the day.
“Finding time to shop and prepare interesting and healthy meals for school lunches can be stressful but the foods we send to school with our kids can contribute up to one-third of their daily intake of nutrients,” Ms Monk said.
She says it’s important to pack a balanced lunch to ensure your child is getting the nutrients they need to be able to concentrate and learn.
“Encourage your child to help prepare their own lunch and praise them when they choose healthy foods,” she said. “Keep ‘occasional’ foods such as snack bars, biscuits, flavoured or coated popcorn and chips out of the lunch box.
“Due to some of our students having severe allergies, items with nuts like Nutella are discouraged.”
Suggestions include: Fresh fruit; crunchy vegetables; meat or protein such as slices of lean meat or a hardboiled egg; dairy food such as a cheese stick or sliced cheese, milk or yoghurt; starchy food such as bread, a roll, pita, flat bread or crackers; and of course, a water bottle.