Study shows most homemade school lunches don't meet health stand - KYTX CBS 19 Tyler Longview News Weather Sports

Study shows most homemade school lunches don't meet health standards

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TYLER (KYTX) - In two weeks, most children all over east Texas will be headed back to school. While you're planning extracurricular activities and which outfits you're going to wear on the first day, dietitians say if you're child typically takes their lunch to school, it's a good idea to start now looking at different food options.

When it comes to school lunches, many students are skipping the line, and coming with their lunches already made.

"I'd probably go with a tuna sandwich, apple slices, some little cheese sticks and carrot sticks."

Although some kids are skipping the lunch line, they're likely missing out nutritionally.

Researchers from the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University-- checked more than 600 third and fourth graders' school lunches. They found just under 30 percent met the national school lunch program standards.

"It's fine to work in those little treats occasionally."

Tammy Lawrence is a clinical dietitian. She admits getting your kids on board with the more healthier lunch options isn't always easy but including them in the lunch making process and making little tweaks here and there can make a difference.

"Compromises can be made too, a lot of times children like the baked Cheetos and baked Lays."

Another example of compromise: trade caramel apple dipping sauce for peanut butter or another nut based butter. It's all to allow for better brain function. That way, you're not feeding your child empty calories.

"You want to try to be sure you're giving them adequate nutrition."

This grandma says for years she's been making school lunches...and she's learned some tricks along the way.

"I like to add a little fruit sometimes so if they like tuna, for instance I've done cherries...with the tuna or apple. I've even taken apple sauce and put in there."

If you know providing a nutritious packed lunch will be a problem-- experts say school lunches could be the healthier way to go.

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