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Warburtons' virtual roundtable feedback thread. Non testers: Share your thoughts on children's packed lunches and white bread for a chance to win a £150 JL voucher NOW CLOSED

(94 Posts)
KatieBMumsnet (MNHQ) Mon 23-Sep-13 17:15:04

This thread is for the 9 Mumsnetters taking part in the Warburtons virtual roundtable.

Here's what Warburtons say: "We've recently undertaken a piece of university research which looks at the role of packed lunches in children's diets. It's a hot-topic at the moment and we'd really like Mumsnetters with a child of primary school age to let us know your comments and thoughts around this research."

Non testers: Tell us what you think of children's packed lunches, do you find it difficult to know what to put in your DC's lunchbox? Or are your DCs happy to eat what they're given? What about white bread? Do your DC's eat white bread? If not, why is this?
Whatever your thoughts on packed lunches and white bread please let us know. Everyone who adds a comment to this thread will be entered into a prize draw where one winner will receive a £150 John Lewis voucher.

Testers: Below are a few feedback questions for you to answer - if you have any more comments, please feel free to add them to your response.

1. Before reading the research what was your perception of white bread?
2. Having looked at this research and key findings from Leeds university (based on a study of 2,500 children), have your perceptions changed at all? If so how? If not, why not?
3. Which, if any, of the key research findings really resonate with you and why?
4. Do you think white bread gets a bad reputation or not? Why do you think this is?
5. The research shows "children's bread consumption increases intakes of some nutrients which have been proven to be beneficial for long term health, including carbohydrate, starch, fibre, calcium, iron and selenium" how aware, if at all, of this were you before reading the research?
6. Do you give your DCs packed lunches for school? If so, how often, if at all does the packed lunch include a sandwich and which type of bread do they usually have? Do you think you're likely to change this after reading the research or not? If so why? If not why not?
7. To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following: "Parents have a tough job when it comes to children's health and nutrition"? Please explain.

Every selected MNer who adds a comment to this thread will receive a £50 John Lewis voucher as a thank you.

Thanks,

MNHQ

katiewalters Thu 26-Sep-13 20:23:44

My son has whole meal bread, that's what the whole family eats as it's healthier than white.
My son eats what's in his lunchbox as it's always things he likes: sandwich, yoghurt, fruits, cheese dippers

givemeaboost Thu 26-Sep-13 21:18:57

Tell us what you think of children's packed lunches, do you find it difficult to know what to put in your DC's lunchbox?

when they have packed lunches (usually school meals) they are very vocal about what they want in them, as they don't have them often its more of a novelty for them. They enjoy pasta, veg sticks, houmous, olives as well as the not so healthy pepperamis/chicken bites/crisps etc

are your DCs happy to eat what they're given?
No they like to have a say I it and I think they should have a say in it as they are the one who has to eat it.

What about white bread? Do your DC's eat white bread? If not, why is this?

Yes they all eat white bread, they are not keen on wholemeal/granary despite it being what I eat, but I am finding as they get older they are more open to having it occasionally.

Helenatwhosays Fri 27-Sep-13 09:42:39

Tester:
post: www.andwhosaysyoucant.com/2013/09/is-white-not-right.html

1. Before reading the research what was your perception of white bread?
I had always thought it was "okay" but not all that healthy. More like a cheap alternative as you should go for wholemeal etc.

2. Having looked at this research and key findings from Leeds university (based on a study of 2,500 children), have your perceptions changed at all? If so how? If not, why not?
I think the research shows that while obviously the levels are higher for some of the more undesirable fats / sugars in white breads, they also contain a great selection of the levels needed for children too.

3. Which, if any, of the key research findings really resonate with you and why?
I liked that the research highlighted that the contents of the sandwich must be taken in to consideration too. Spreads, high fat meats etc obviously directly impact the healthy factor of the lunch.

4. Do you think white bread gets a bad reputation or not? Why do you think this is?
I think with the health and wellbring industry's constant reminders that we should all be eating wholefoods, avoiding processed foods etc etc it is very easy to think that all white breads, pastas and rices are bad.

5. The research shows "children's bread consumption increases intakes of some nutrients which have been proven to be beneficial for long term health, including carbohydrate, starch, fibre, calcium, iron and selenium" how aware, if at all, of this were you before reading the research?

I think I knew that bread wasn't "bad" all around but didn't realise there were as many benefits as the research highlighted.

6. Do you give your DCs packed lunches for school? If so, how often, if at all does the packed lunch include a sandwich and which type of bread do they usually have? Do you think you're likely to change this after reading the research or not? If so why? If not why not?

Last year, I gave my DC a packed lunch which was 90% of the time, a sandwich. This year, as I thought it might start getting harder to have him eat the right things within packed lunches as he will only eat white breads. I am more inclined now to include some packed lunches in his routine.

7. To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following: "Parents have a tough job when it comes to children's health and nutrition"? Please explain.

I totally agree. As much as parents want to do what is best for their children, we have to remember that they have their own likes and dislikes as well. As much as we want them to eat what WE want, they can cause us much more stress by not agreeing to our choices.
I think the best thing we can do as parents is to make the best choices based on what their little likes and dislikes are and constantly try in small measures to introduce new and healthy additions. Slowly, they will start eating better if these are the options given.

ILoveAFullFridge Fri 27-Sep-13 10:05:15

What Chulita said.

(I know that sounds lazy, but she has basically said everything I was going to say! Even down to the bread maker and the 50/50 loaves with seeds.)

I haven't changed my opinion that white bread should be a small part of a varied diet, and not the main carbohydrate.

PostBellumBugsy Fri 27-Sep-13 10:56:02

Non tester

Tell us what you think of children's packed lunches, do you find it difficult to know what to put in your DC's lunchbox?

No, I don't find it difficult to put things in my DC's lunchbox. We have more food choices today than ever in the history of human existence, so it really shouldn't be difficult!!!!! Most days, my DCs choose for themselves from whatever selection we have at home.

Or are your DCs happy to eat what they're given?

Sometimes the DCs love what they have, sometimes they are a bit bored if we repeat the same thing for too long. Sometimes they don't like what I've bought or they've chosen, so we don't repeat that again.

What about white bread? Do your DC's eat white bread? If not, why is this?

I'm not a huge fan of bread, regardless of whether it is white or brown. Yes, the DCs eat bread (white & brown) but I try not to feed them too much of the stuff. Humans weren't designed to consume the vast quantities of wheat we shove down our gullets these days, so we try not to eat too much of it. For what its worth, I don't think it makes much difference if you eat brown or wholegrain - it isn't really "healthier", it is just less well absorbed by the body.

WowOoo Fri 27-Sep-13 11:59:08

Non tester

I find packed lunches quite easy, but it's hard to get variety and to get them to try new things. As long as we have a variety of evening meals and try new things at home it's OK with me.

We eat a mixture of white, brown and seeded bread. I vary it.
I prefer freshly baked bread, but will buy pre packaged bread for the freezer.

I think for certain things white bread is nicer - a bacon sarnie for example. I'd also avoid a wholegrain French stick. But for an egg or prawn I prefer seeded.

MaddAddam Fri 27-Sep-13 12:28:22

Non tester:
Tell us what you think of children's packed lunches, do you find it difficult to know what to put in your DC's lunchbox?

2 of my 3 are quite easy, they like wholemeal sliced bread sandwiches, fruit etc. The third is harder as she doesn't really like sandwiches as a basis for a meal, so when she does have packed lunches we experiment with wraps (white), pittas (white or wholemeal) etc for variety, but mostly she sticks to school lunches.

Or are your DCs happy to eat what they're given?

They like to have input and choices. Rather than just be given meals.

What about white bread? Do your DC's eat white bread? If not, why is this?

They like it but we usually have wholemeal, as a general thing, and occasional white bread as a concession to their tastes.

ILoveAFullFridge Fri 27-Sep-13 12:28:50

1. Before reading the research what was your perception of white bread?
I thought it was a way of making air and water stand up. But was nice for toast ‘n’ Marmite. That is to say, standard sliced white. Other whites, artisan/ethnic etc are nice for a change or with specific dishes, but man cannot live on white bread alone.
2. Having looked at this research and key findings from Leeds university (based on a study of 2,500 children), have your perceptions changed at all? If so how? If not, why not?
No, not at all. I would have liked to know the difference between the nutritional content of the various breads assessed, and whether that was significant in the children’s overall diets.
3. Which, if any, of the key research findings really resonate with you and why?
Surprised by the saturated fat, and also that nearly 10% of children do not eat bread. Were coeliac children excluded?
4. Do you think white bread gets a bad reputation or not? Why do you think this is?
Yes, and it’s deserved. I wonder whether those who eat/serve white bread also tend to choose less healthy fillings. Or am I just being snobbish? So much has been taken out to make it white, that nutrients have to be added back in to make it ‘healthy’. It’s a bit like saying that Dairy Milk is a source of calcium.
5. The research shows "children's bread consumption increases intakes of some nutrients which have been proven to be beneficial for long term health, including carbohydrate, starch, fibre, calcium, iron and selenium" how aware, if at all, of this were you before reading the research?
Err, durr – sandwiches have stuff put in them.
6. Do you give your DCs packed lunches for school? If so, how often, if at all does the packed lunch include a sandwich and which type of bread do they usually have? Do you think you're likely to change this after reading the research or not? If so why? If not why not?
Packed lunches always contain a carb. Bread is the most convenient. We generally have either home-made 50/50 bread with added seeds, or wholegrain/50-50/added seeds wraps (because they are convenient and easy for the dc to cope with). I won’t be making any changes to the type of bread I buy. The only thing this report seemed to be saying was that children’s overall diets seemed to be related to the type of bread they ate.
7. To what extent do you agree or disagree with the following: "Parents have a tough job when it comes to children's health and nutrition"? Please explain.
No tougher than any other parenting job. The goalposts move all the time, and it’s up to us to do our best.
I’m not really sure what the point of this study was. Reading it made me feel a teeny bit as I would imagine feeling reading a study comparing formula milks and children’s diets, published by a formula company.

pootlebug Fri 27-Sep-13 12:35:24

do you find it difficult to know what to put in your DC's lunchbox?
- No

Or are your DCs happy to eat what they're given?
- Pretty much. They sometimes leave some of it but usually eat sufficient to keep them going through the day.

What about white bread? Do your DC's eat white bread? If not, why is this?
- They do, but not every day. My husband and I eat mainly low carb so there isn't always white bread (or even any bread) in the house. Kids do eat some bread but tend to prefer wraps, pitta etc to sliced bread. When/if they do eat bread it tends to be white - they get enough fibre from eating plenty of fruit so don't really need extra in bread.

Rooble Fri 27-Sep-13 13:06:52

Non-tester: my DS has packed lunch twice a week - generally a sandwich, some chopped veg or soup (depending on the weather), a yoghurt and a fruit. Bread is always homemade wholemeal.
He does (we do) eat white bread - eg brioche for Sunday breakfast, or ciabatta with soup - but virtually never sliced white factory-made loaves because I think it's revolting and it's me that does the shopping! I think sliced white bread has a deservedly bad reputation. It bears no relation to what I'd call "proper" bread.
DS never asks for white bread in his sandwiches, but if we go to a cafe and get a sandwich he'll generally ask for it on white.
Hope this helps!

asuwere Fri 27-Sep-13 13:31:00

do you find it difficult to know what to put in your DC's lunchbox?

No, not really. It's pretty much the same most days.

Or are your DCs happy to eat what they're given?

Yes, they seem to be, never had any complaints. I take the same lunch to my work as they get in their lunch box and I find it ok too smile

What about white bread? Do your DC's eat white bread? If not, why is this?

Yes they do eat it. I much prefer granary/seeded/wholemeal bread but DH will only eat white so we usually have 50/50 or best of both in the house. Given the choice, the older kids would have white but the youngest would have same as me!

poachedeggs Fri 27-Sep-13 13:37:26

Tell us what you think of children's packed lunches, do you find it difficult to know what to put in your DC's lunchbox?

I think it's easy to make a healthy lunch for them but it takes planning and effort to keep it varied. I tend to give a sandwich (cheese, tuna, egg, rarely ham), natural yogurt with fruit in a little clip lock box, and a carrot, some red peppers or some cheese. Occasionally there's some home baking, crisps or a sweet. Pasta or couscous is usually popular but only occasionally because it takes more planning.

Or are your DCs happy to eat what they're given?

Not without complaint but I don't take it personally!

What about white bread? Do your DCs eat white bread? If not, why is this?

They have white bread around half the time. They are happy to eat wholemeal, I've never had any complaints about it and they are as likely to choose brown if offered. I don't allow toast every morning - mostly they have porridge. I think it's really easy to eat far too much wheat so I'm a bit mean about it.

magentastardust Fri 27-Sep-13 16:08:50

Non Tester

I always struggle with packed lunches, try to come up with something a bit different and not put the same things in all the time. Both my children like quite different foods too which doesn't help!

My children to do tend to eat what they are given though so that makes it easier.
As a rule I normally use half and half type breads for packed lunches. My children do eat White bread now and again but mainly for toast.

BeCool Fri 27-Sep-13 16:34:25

Non-tester

DD is in year 1 - she is becoming increasingly fussy re food.
She will usually have a cream cheese and cucumber or an egg mayo sandwich. Though today she told me she no longer likes eggs <<weeps>>

We use 50/50 bread. I'd prefer wholegrain bread but she won't eat "anything with bits in".

I very rarely buy white bread - if I do it will be a baguette or bloomer or other fresh bread (non-sliced) product. I can't recall the last time I brought a slice white loaf.

I've very close to abandoning packed lunches entirely and putting her back on school dinners. But she'd probably just eat the bread .........

Thank goodness she eats fruit.

Babycarmen Fri 27-Sep-13 16:44:31

My kids (5 and 1) are happier to eat white bread over brown, but will eat either so long as I take the crusts off! Which I do.. to keep the peace.
They will pretty much eat anything, they are not too fussy, but can be when it comes to trying new things. I would love to give them cold pasta salads etc instead of sandwiches/wraps but I don't think they would get eaten!

DoubleMum Fri 27-Sep-13 16:48:42

When my children have packed lunches, I try to put some kind of bread/wrap/crackers, some protein (ham/cheese), some veg (cucumber/tomatoes), some fruit and a little cake.
My two aren't TOO fussy. DD prefers granary bread. DS prefers white but rarely gets it as he'll eat most kinds and nobody else wants white sliced. Both love a crusty French stick.

3rdnparty Fri 27-Sep-13 17:32:48

Non testers: Tell us what you think of children's packed lunches, do you find it difficult to know what to put in your DC's lunchbox?
A bit we are quite onto food but a lot of what we would normally eat is not lunchbox friendly - I may add new things but will generally test out of school first.
Or are your DCs happy to eat what they're given? DS normally does but packed lunches generally all stuff i know he likes...

What about white bread? Do your DC's eat white bread? If not, why is this?
we have always eaten wholemeal in the main- I always have and don't like package white bread....don't mind fresh crusty white/bagette
have tried 50/50 but it's too pappy..

Whatever your thoughts on packed lunches and white bread please let us know. Everyone who adds a comment to this thread will be entered into a prize draw where one winner will receive a £150 John Lewis voucher.

heymammy Fri 27-Sep-13 17:39:06

Non-tester...packed lunches are a pita IMO and I would rather the DDs would just have school dinners!

Unless we've planned ahead then they basically get a variation of the same packed lunch for the whole week I.e. brown bread/wrap/bagel with mix of ham/cheese/soft cheese or tuna, yoghurty item, drink and fruit or veg item with a biscuit or treat occasionally.

I pretty much never use white bread, it's seen as a huge treat in this house, there's just not enough fibre in it.

I do wish I was more creative with their packed lunches but I don't see the point in making beautiful lunches just to have most of it come back home <yes dd2, I am looking at you>

LentilAsAnything Fri 27-Sep-13 18:33:40

My child is not at school, but we have packed lunches when we go out for the day. I never buy 'bread bread'. We occasionally have wraps, or bagels, but try to limit our wheat intake. I don't think we should eat as much bready stuff as we do.
My child is nearly three, and so far, mostly happy to eat what we offer him. Varies according to mood and hunger. smile I don't find it difficult to make a packed lunch. It's just food.

SmokedMackerel Fri 27-Sep-13 18:45:25

Non tester.

My daughter prefers German style rye bread and has that most days with cheese or salami or chicken.

My younger one doesn't like the rye bread, but we tend to have rolls (brown and white) when we eat bread at home. I do use white bread for toast.

I only have to make a packed lunch three days a week, don't find it too hard to think of things to put into it, though it probably could be a bit more varied. But I'd rather she eats a predictable lunch than leaves an exotic one. I try to vary the fruit each day, or at least each week, and rotate some combination of cucumber, carrot, celery and tomatoes each day. Usually the carrot just comes back home again, but for some reason I am persevering with it.

GoingGoingGoth Fri 27-Sep-13 19:41:04

Non tester
Tell us what you think of children's packed lunches, do you find it difficult to know what to put in your DC's lunchbox?
DD can be fussy over sandwich fillings, so I have a selection which I rotate through the week.
There is always a dairy product; cheese or yoghurt, and at least one piece of fruit or veg, apple, orange, grapes, melon, kiwi, carrot, cucumber, peppers, mushrooms or olives.
Something crunchy: breadsticks, crackers.
As I bake regularly, there is usually a little cake or flapjack.

Or are your DCs happy to eat what they're given? What about white bread?
Dd usually eats what she's given, she let me know if there's something she doesn't like. She prefers white bread when sliced, so we compromise on 50/50. I can get away with brown if buns, pitta bread, but wraps have to be white.

Do your DC's eat white bread? If not, why is this? As above DD's bread is mixed between white, brown & 50/50. I prefer her having higher fibre.

Theincidental Fri 27-Sep-13 19:54:24

Whit ir whole meal bread is most lunch boxes for Ds. He seems to find whole meal harder to digest, but I prefer it. Granary or seeded bread is banned at nursery.

He invariably has sandwich with soup or veggies, fruit and some cheese.

Varying lunches is hard when he's at nursery everyday and he has dinner there too.

I don't think there's anything wrong with bread every lunch per se, but variety is nice, but there's always a bread based item (wrap, crumpets etc.)

Littlecherublegs Fri 27-Sep-13 22:18:40

Non tester

We only buy brown / wholemeal / granary bread as it tastes better and is healthier.
As a child I had packed lunches full of jam sandwiches on white bread, a packet of crisps and a kitkat! Im determined to give my children healthier alternatives.
At present DS is only 1 but eats pretty much anything and everything we offer him so if he keeps it up and does ever have packed lunches I'll aim to keep them healthy and varied, no white bread, lots of fruit,.yogurt, carrot sticks, cheese, etc. Though understand peer pressure may come into play at some point!

Non tester here.

At the moment white bread is our lunchbox saviour. DS eats white bread ham sandwiches without fail. Anything else in the lunchbox has a question mark over it.

I have no problem with white bread. Years ago I studied the nutrition panels (quiet day in the supermarket) and concluded Warburtons has the lowest sugar. So that is actually what we buy!

BadMissM Sat 28-Sep-13 22:22:55

Non-tester. It's quite easy to find what to put in children's packed lunches. I try and put anything I can think of a way to make portable in a packed lunch. Little salads in small boxes, with dressing in little jars. Feta chesse, finger-sized bits of pepper....Houmous, with crudites of carrot, cucumber, and little toasted pitta bread fingers....I try to make it interesting to eat.

My DCs are generally happy to eat what is given, and sometimes they ask to vary it- wraps rather than sandwiches, pretzels not crisps...

My DCs mainly eat brown or granary bread, but it depends what they are eating it with....white bread for toast and Dairylea, or bacon sandwiches. Baguettes for a plughman's type cheese roll, ciabatta with mozzarella...

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