Lunch at school is not always the most favourite meal for some children. They might be too busy playing or feel full from snacking at recess. If kids choose what they want in their lunchbox, they will be more inclined to eat their own food choices.
Be prepared for school lunch to come home occasionally. Remember, it’s your job to provide the food - it’s your child’s job to decide how much they eat.
Dietary guidelines for children
The National Health and Medical Research Council (NH&MRC) is responsible for developing dietary guidelines. The focus of the guidelines is to promote the potential benefits of healthy eating and to improve the community´s health and wellbeing.
The guidelines for children and adolescence are in draft form:
1. Encourage and support breastfeeding.
2. Children and adolescents need sufficient nutritious food to grow and develop normally.
- Growth should be checked regularly.
- Physical activity is important for all children and adolescents.
3. Children and adolescents should be encouraged to:
- Enjoy a wide variety of nutritious foods.
- Eat plenty of vegetables (including legumes) and fruits.
- Eat plenty of cereals (including breads, rice, pasta, noodles), preferably wholegrain.
- Include lean meat, fish, poultry and/or alternatives such as legumes and nuts.
- Include reduced fat dairy foods and /or alternatives.
- Choose water as a drink. Alcohol is not recommended for children.
4. Care should be taken to:
- Limit saturated fat and moderate total fat intake. Low fat diets are not suitable for infants.
- Choose foods low in salt.
- Consume only moderate amounts of sugars and foods containing added sugars.
- Look after your child’s food.