My sons normally bring their lunches to school, unless they are having waffles and then my oldest buys his lunch, therefore I don’t normally read the menu that comes home monthly except to mark the waffle days. (Usually every Wednesday.) For lack of better reading material with my coffee this morning I actually read February’s offerings, and was struck by the little key at the bottom that reads: “**Contains Wheat” and another symbol to show what contains dairy. I went back through the menu and realized every item had a double asterisks by it~ every single thing offered contains wheat. They do have a salad bar each day so I assume a gluten-free child could live off that if they didn’t bring their lunch, but I have a hard time imagining an elementary student getting much from it. It makes me sad for the free/reduced lunch kids who might have food intolerances, and the kids who just want to buy their lunches like their friends do but can’t because they never have good options. But the real thing that I think this says is that we are a wheat nation~ people generally have no idea how much wheat they take in on a daily basis but it is so easy to eat it at every meal. I lived on wheat before realizing I had a problem with it, which I don’t think is a coincidence. A bit more variety in my diet might have saved me some headaches, fatigue, and stomach issues. I love the schools that have gardens on their property and use the food in the schools. Imagine basing lunch menus on what is growing outside the window, what is in season and fresh and healthy, then adding in the other things, such as grains and beans, and dairy. Oh and meat if you like, I always forget that. There is an organization promoting school gardens called The Edible Schoolyard Project and they are very worth checking out. Last year I asked the principal at my sons’ school if we could plant a garden and he said he was thinking about a greenhouse after the school’s construction was finished. That’d work too, but ideally I think both would be best.
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