We Are Hungry

First Lady Michelle Obama has done considerable work to help fight the battle of childhood obesity and instill the concept of healthy eating in young people across the country. As a result of this, school lunches have been limited to 850 calories, and kids across America are complaining it’s not enough.

Shockingly, others are agreeing.

According to various university researchers, teenage boys require between 1,800 and 3,200 calories per day. Girls need 1,600-2,400 calories per day. This range is contingent on body composition and activity levels.

It seems that the issue is not really calorie restriction. It is the quality of the food being served.

It is important to note that most fruits and vegetables, low fat dairy, fish, poultry and lean cuts of meat are relatively low in calories. An 850-calorie lunch, consisting of fresh, healthy food would likely be more than most growing kids would be able to consume in any given meal.

A group of high school students in Kansas have put together a protest video, set to the tune of “We Are Young” by F.U.N. and retitled it “We Are Hungry.” The video claims that the lunches are not sufficient to provide the energy needed to participate in sports.  It shows kids sneaking off to fill up on fast foods and processed snacks to give them more sustenance to get through the day.

Once again, the point has been missed. Any athlete will tell you that high calorie, high fat, high sugar, processed foods are not the key to performance, and often make people feel sluggish after eating them. Providing fresh and healthy “real foods” are the key to controlling weight and energy levels. Educating youth on proper nutrition, and giving them the right foods to help make healthy choices is a better idea.

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2 Responses to “We Are Hungry”

  1. kirsten@FarmFreshFeasts Says:

    You make an excellent point. My kids come home for lunch (crazy, I know) but I have to say that a first grader and a 6th grader have different requirements and a one size fits all school lunch will be too much for the former and insufficient for the latter.

    • indigo jones Says:

      I think if the food is healthy, the portions will be a lot larger. I workout heavily every day, and eat healthfully. 850 calories is 3/4 of my daily intake most days. Surely, it is enough to power a kid through the school day, if it is a nutritious 850 worth!

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