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To feel like force feding the anorexic school teacher whose imposing a ban on cereal barres in packed lunches?

(55 Posts)
onthewarpath Wed 15-Oct-08 11:39:29

Being all in favour of healthy balanced eating, I nevertheless find myself fighting with school every day since they have imposed a ban of cereal barres in packed lunches. So while school lunch children are scoffing down chocolate mousse for desert my children are supposed to be eating celery and carrot sticks?????angry
I always prided myself in giving a reasonably balanced, mostly home made, content in lunch boxes. In fact, If I was taking any thing from it I would probably be done by NSPCC for under nurishing my children.
I am being told that it is because parents give piles of chocolate barres, fizzy drinks and crisps (all in the same meal of course!!!!!!)I have yet to meet one such parent as most of the ones I talk to seem to be quite clued up on what to give children in a lunche box. They even know about FRUITS believe it or not wink.
If really a child was comming to school with the most infamous lunch box, could the teachers not call the parents and give them sensible advice or is that not PC enough? why should everyone be painted with the same brush?

schneebly Wed 15-Oct-08 11:45:14

It is a can of worms really - I can see why it might be difficult for the school but I feel your pain too! I am very careful about DS1's packed lunches and they are full of healthy stuff every day but near easter time for a treat one day I let him take a tiny packet of choc buttons (from inside an easter egg). He was told that he wasn't allowed chocolate in his lunch box and to take them home. I was unaware of this rule - he was in reception and a bit upset that he had done something 'wrong'. So they dont let the kids have chocolate but some have crisps in their lunch every day! Hard to know what to do in their position though.

lionheart Wed 15-Oct-08 11:48:43

Why anorexic?

chocolatedot Wed 15-Oct-08 11:49:23

This is a joke, surely they can ban crisps, sweets, chocolate and fizzy drinks and leave it at that. Children need a lot of calories and they're going to struggle to get enough from fruit and a sandwich. I inlcude home made muesli cookies and flapajcks etc specifically to boost the calorie content. ALso include a pepperami somethimes to boost protein.

Mercy Wed 15-Oct-08 11:52:17

Seems mad to ban cereal bars, I agree (although I suppose some of them might contain highish levels of sugar)

I don't know what the anorexic comment is about though hmm

ruddynorah Wed 15-Oct-08 11:54:00

most cereal bars are high in sugar, so may as well stick a chocolate bar in there.

shitty thread title btw.

lou031205 Wed 15-Oct-08 12:11:53

I don't think using 'anorexic' in your thread title on mumsnet is how to win friends and influence people wink

Perhaps you could ask them what they object to and find a low sugar version?

misshardbroom Wed 15-Oct-08 12:27:34

I really object to schools having any sort of lunchbox Gestapo and 'banning' certain foods (other than possibly nuts because of the actual risk of death to highly allergic children).

I have no problem at all with schools issuing parents with 'healthy lunchbox guidelines', but the 'healthiness' of a child's diet has to be put into the context of what else they eat in a day.

For example, my dd eats no fruit whatsoever, which makes lunchboxes a big challenge. But she eats most vegetables and so balances it up at her evening meal. So is her diet less healthy than a child with two pieces of fruit in her lunchbox and Kentucky Fried Chicken for tea?

I know there's some parents who feed their children very badly, but I think these schools should recognise that most of us are doing the best we can, and back off.

ScareyBitchFeast Wed 15-Oct-08 12:32:15

mine have in some people's eyes an extremely unhealthy lunch - unhealthy in an adult, but, imo, fine in a child who uses up a lot of energy,
they dont need low fat this and low fat that

on healthy eating day my dd had chocolate spread sandwiches on white bread! shock

acutally it was a mistake on my part i promise.

but some people are amazingingly judgemental and sanctimonuous about this topic,

a mixed, and varied diet is what is needed.
proteins, carbs, fruit/veg. etc.,

Bubbaluv Wed 15-Oct-08 12:32:21

Out of curiosity, how does the school enforce the ban? Would your child's lunch actually be confiscated?

TheProvincialLady Wed 15-Oct-08 12:46:48

Do you mean that the teacher is actually suffering from anorexia, or do you mean that she is thin by your standards and it is supposed to be an insult? If the latter then please don't use the word, it is offensive to anorexia sufferers and thin people alike.

Lots of cereal bars are just as sugar laden and nutritonally poor as a bar of chocolate so I can sort of see why the school discourages them. But if you disagree with the healthy eating policy why not write to the head rather than picking on some poor random teacher who just happens to be thinner than you and who has to enforce school policy even if she disagrees with it?

sunnygirl1412 Wed 15-Oct-08 14:08:54

I would certainly seek an appointment with the Headteacher and ask them to explain why children eating school dinners can have chocolate mousse but your child can't have a cereal bar, as I doubt there's a logical explanation for this.

I used to send my children with a brown bread sandwich with some form of protein in it (ham/cheese/pate etc), crisps, fruit, a penguin biscuit (or similar) and a drink. Over the years I stopped giving the crisps (in fact I rarely have them in the house now) and gave fruit juice instead of squash.

In my experience, the fruit often did not get eaten - the same apple/banana could go to and from school most of a week - so I did start to wonder what the point was of my trying to send healthy options if no-one at school was making sure that the children ate the fruit before the biscuit, as I do at home.

I do think that the school is being unreasonable - as others have said, issuing guidelines/suggestions is fair enough, but banning things for ideological rather than health reasons is not.

Elffriend Wed 15-Oct-08 14:15:43

I echo distaste about the random use of anorexic - not big/clever or vaguely relevant. Pretty crap in fact.

That said, do agree with the sentiment. Ihave always been confused about the apparent hypocrisy around food at school. When I have seen the menus for school lunches they include lots of puddings - far more than DS would have if at home and yet there is this utter clampdown on lunch boxes. Surely these are double standards?

<last time I posted on this though I was shot down for "complaining" about school puds - which was not my point but, hey ho.>

Flightattendant2 Wed 15-Oct-08 14:19:50

I think the cereal bar stuff is OTT personally but I object to your using the word anorexic in your title. It's very offensive for those of us who are/have been/have children with the disorder.

You need to sort that out mate.

SheikYerbouti Wed 15-Oct-08 14:25:19

Cereal; Bars - YANBU

Using anorexic as an insult - YABVU

Although, I expect you already know that

edam Wed 15-Oct-08 14:25:21

Lots of schools seem to be imposing rather daft rules that have nothing to do with nutrition. I think they are under pressure to be seen to be doing something and don't bother to find out what is a healthy diet and what's not.

Cereal bars are full of sugar, but so is chocolate pudding so making a distinction between the two is ridiculous.

Have a look on the school food trust website, and then on for general healthy eating guidance for children. Then you might want to go and have a chat with the head...

NotBigNotClever Wed 15-Oct-08 14:32:20

I think the casual use of the word "anorexic" in the thread title is unfortunate, but then again, it does highlight the fact that the kind of "food facism" that is evident in the over-policing of children's lunchboxes could have a direct link to the development of an unhealthy attitude to food: precisely the opposite of the school's intention, I assume. Surely healthy eating is a balanced attitude to food: junk food is here to stay and everyone has to learn how to deal with it. I allow my children chocolate and "junk food" as treats, with the caveat that anything containing trans fats can't really be considered as food, junk or otherwise.

chocolatedot Wed 15-Oct-08 14:36:10

Cereal bars are not always full of sugar - there are many (particularly made by smaller, independent companies) which are fine.

OrmIrian Wed 15-Oct-08 14:36:27

Cereal bars aren't that great TBH. High-sugar largely empty calories masquerading as healthy food. But I think I agree with your general point.

BTW as might have been mentioned wink anorexic isn't a good choice of word.

branflake81 Wed 15-Oct-08 14:37:23

Oh bloody hell. I used to BE anorexic and her thread title doesn't offend's jsut an expression. Some people are uber sensitive on MN, seems like you can't move for pissing people off.

Sorry. Rant over.

NotBigNotClever Wed 15-Oct-08 15:04:50

Well, I used to be anorexic as well, branflake81, and the thread title doesn't bother me in the slightest either, but MN is stuffed full of over-sensitve types...

Flightattendant2 Wed 15-Oct-08 15:10:08

well so did I and it bothers me.

so ner wink

krib Wed 15-Oct-08 15:11:01

Our school have banned cereal bars too. We implemented a Healthy Eating policy and as a result a nutritionist from the local council came to the school. She had a set of guidelines from the government (rolls eyes) that state "healthy foods" allowed and not allowed in lunch boxes.

Believe it or not (for I have seen it with my very eyes!!) that Cereal Bars are on the "not allowed" list as they believe that the majority are high in saturated fats and sugars.

PuzzleRocks Wed 15-Oct-08 15:11:25

I have never been anorexic, I come from a family of skinny minnies, but have had the insult levelled at me by ahem bigger ladies. I find it pretty offensive and I am definitely not of a sensitive disposition. It comes across as spiteful and weakens your argument.

smartiejake Wed 15-Oct-08 15:12:27

I would be interested to know whether the teachers are also banned from these sorts of treats in school. Do they all eat healthy snacks at breaktime or do they like most schools I know still enjoy their chocolate biscuits at breaktime and have crisps and cakes with their lunch?

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