Do School Lunches Make Kids Smarter?

Yes!  Possibly one of the best things a Nutrition department can do for a school is to inform the parents of how to help their kids perform better in school, by way of their lunch bag.  A few years ago we witnessed soda and candy vending machines being removed from the schools.  Slowly research on the effects of reducing sugary drinks and foods were measured against healthy breakfasts and lunches.  The evidence from the results on the exam performances were very enlightening.  The proof was in the pudding, the students were performing better with a stronger focus on their daily studies.  In fact,  “one high school in Appleton, Wisconsin replaced their regular poor-quality school lunches with healthy fresh foods at lunch with water as the main beverage. The changes resulted in improved behavior from the students and zero truancy’s.”

Like other schools, Appleton, Wisconsin found that eating healthy at lunch will help keep a child’s mind sharp and ready to learn all afternoon. Convincing schools to change their lunches might take a lot of effort, but there are other things you can do, such as teach your kids the importance of eating nutritious foods. Hopefully, with your help, they will choose healthier salads and vegetables, instead of French fries or fried foods, and water instead of soda.  Some other options for kid’s is to send lunch with your kids. Hearty soups, salads, fruits, and sandwiches with whole grains breads for sandwhiches can be packed in insulated containers to stay hot or cold. ”

By eating whole foods and reducing sugary products it was noticed that the students glucose levels were balanced and steady with very few peaks and valleys.  Evidence is showing that kids who have a diet where all foods are consumed from the various food groups are making a stronger impact then once thought before.

Try combining some of these foods for a healthier focused mind, all have been shown to have a profound effect on how the brain functions.: Milk, Bananas, Eggs, Wheat Toast, Berries, Walnuts, Sliced Chicken /Turkey.

If your child is getting hungry early on in the school day, introduce products into their breakfast with a small amount of fat from the dairy or meats listed. Additionally, fruits take longer to digest and therefore, provides another benefit to having one out the door.