Tuesday, 12 January 2010

More nannying crap

The British Medial Journal has published a survey on the packed lunches that half of all UK school children eat every day. The study, which was carried out by Leeds University, claims that just 1% of lunchboxes (I think they mean the contents of lunchboxes) meet with the government’s new guidelines for the nutritional content of school lunches.

You can see where this is going, can’t you? The report claims that hardly any packed lunches contain vegetables and salad. What a bunch of sad wankers these academics are. Most kids don’t take salad or raw broccoli to school for the simple fact most of them don’t like it. What’s the bloody point of putting expensive items in a child’s lunchbox if all they’re going to do is throw it away? I don’t suppose most of the 19-year-olds responsible for this worthless piece of ‘research’ have any kids and wouldn’t understand how difficult it can be to get children to eat anything that’s healthy.

My guess is that these morons are going to be calling for legislation to control what parents feed their children. It can’t be all that long before we have another swathe of public sector employees whose sole job will be to police the contents of children’s packed lunches and issue warnings, fines and force parents to attend nutrition re-education centres. Their justification will be that ‘something must be done as we’re sitting on a public health time bomb’.

Am I the only person in this world who’s heartily sick of interfering busybodies poking their unwanted noses into every aspect of our lives and creating well-paid non-jobs for themselves with gold-plated pensions? Why don’t we just hand over our children to the state when they’re born and the government can then feed and brainwash the kids into vassals of the state? They'll soon be ready to work in Gordon’s tractor factories and collective farms as they partake in the long and glorious march to the sunny uplands of the rather nasty and dour form of socialist squalor the idiot seems intent on forcing us to live under?

Rant over!


  1. I grew up in the not-too-distant nineties, but if I'd seen a scrap of broccoli anywhere near my lunchbox as a child, there would have been a minor revolution on my parent's hands. What the government fail to realise is that most mothers and fathers have the bases covered with the system I remember (sandwich, biscuit, pack of crisps, piece of fruit, bottle of juice). This was enough to keep myself and my sister as healthy, active children, in an age before the world had been given Saint Jamie of Oliver. I can only assume these "nutritionists" have been equipped with the sort of guidelines that medal-wielding athletes would turn their noses at. Good luck with trying to get the kids on board, government. Yet another triumph for the out of touch brigade.

  2. I wonder what the report would make of my kids' lunches. One of them loves fruit and raw veg, one hates them, the other is somewhere near to the middle. They all have similar body shapes (apart from the obvious differences between the genders) but eat different diets, very similar to when I was growing up with my siblings.

    I'm in a bit of a Kenny Everett retro moment when I say that we should get all of the busybodies, round them up, put 'em in a field, and bomb the bastards!

  3. I wonder if it's occurred to the pea brains who compiled this report that if just 1% of packed lunches meet with the government guidelines, could there possibly something wrong with the guidelines? And while we're on the subject, I wish to ban the word guidelines. I mean, what the feck does it mean? It's a nasty, sinister little word that's pregnant with threat and coercion. "They're only guidelines but..." I can hear the government inspector saying. They don't have the gumption to make them law so they call them guidelines which means they can ignore all that tedious business of parliamentary scrutiny and the guidelines become defacto law.

  4. I nearly wet myself laughing at this post!! I can't agree more. My son (16) hasn't touched anything green and veggie looking since he could speak and say no, and he's a big strapping lad who uses more energy in a week than I do in a year. He used to eat veggies when I was in charge of his diet, you know, when you mush everything together and shovel it in their tiny trusting mouths, but not any more. Perhaps the researchers could come to my house one evening and cook a meal then watch my son eat everything but leave what he doesn't like decorating the edges of his plate!! So no XTM, you're not the only person who's sick of interfering busybodies.
    Hope you're feeling much better and getting around more. I'll miss your blog when you're up and mobile and don't post anymore, but don't let that stop you!!

  5. Dear TM, To cheer you in your recovery watch Lambassador of Australia, aka Sam Kekovich, on both Facebook & Twitter, giving his maiden speech at the UN ! The theme is to have the UN declare Australia Day 26 January an international public holiday & celebrate by everyone lots of BBQ'd lamb chops !
    make peace & rename Jerusalem "Jerusalamb", Harlem "HarLamb". You get my drift ! Perhaps a few lovely healthy lamb chops in the Brit Kiddies lunch boxes will make them fit & healthy.
    Perhaps Prince William will be seen eating lamb chops while in NZ & Australia this week. What an example he'd be to the kids and the "researchers".

  6. Kids are more likely to take packed lunch if they are fussy eaters as they don't like school dinners - so that surely would have affected the results. The fussy kids wouldn't have wanted any fruit or salad in their lunch box.

  7. THE word for 2010, at least Down Under, is catastrophic, 'invented' as the highest bush fire warning & it's been invoked a few times this week with the 38, 39, 40, 43 degree temps. Catastrophic illness, noun, gives a description for your horrible health experience (as well as your horrible hospital experience): severe illness requiring prolonger hospitalization or recovery; usually involves high costs for hospitals & doctors & medicines. So it looks like you're enjoying better food. (can't work out the posting restrictions). Helen from Queanbeyan, NSW, Australia

  8. The whole issue of food has been a constant trial here. I had a son who was not allowed ANY veggie or fibre in his diet for a while in his life! WHere does that leave me?
    My teens, well, are fairly typical teens. They eat a varied diet. Lunchbox, well, we fail! Sandwich, muffin, and water or sports drink depending on the child. (sports drink on medical grounds!!!) Littly, can't have school dinners as there is NO LEGAL DUTY to provide coelic friendly food! So, lunchbox it is for her. She is the mainly healthy one. She has veggies and cream cheese (low fat as you can't get full fat)to dip in, yoghurt (full fat as she is a growing child) and a juice (full sugar as I don't like the chemical gunk).

    Do I pass as a BAD parent? I hope so! My kids are healthy (apart from the one drinking sports drinks who is underweight). None of them are overweight and they are all very active. Go figure!

    Rather than worrying about what children eat it would be better to look at the amount of real excersise they get? How about legislating the amount of time kids spend watching TV or playing computer games? Oh! THat's next on the agenda is it?

  9. Perhaps the government could apply those same standards to hospital food! Imagine that, having to stick to their own guidelines!

  10. Here Here!
    I'm a T.A....working on a supply basis at a local school...every morning I'm told to check the lunch boxes and award stickers to the children who have a brought a "good" lunch.....it eats up(no pun intended!!)20 mins of my day when I could be doing something else, like listening to two children reading, which is way more important!
    Bloody powers that be!
    Great post!

  11. As a former lunchroom lady I have to agree with the study results. The lunches some kids brought gave me high blood pressure just helping them to open their pre-made sodium feasts. My daughter whined that she wanted a Schneider's (Kraft?)"Lunchables" and I told her (10yrs old) that I may as well just send her with a salt shaker. She didn't find that helpful at all. We sent home helpful hints on packing quality lunches with little results.

    Most parents are honestly trying to do well for their children. There are some who are absolutely clueless when it comes to feeding their children--just check out some of the lunches kids bring...it's appalling. Some of it stems from not being able to use the word "no" to their children and others it is just too easy to buy prepackaged meals.

    My four ate decent lunches when I had to pack them. A sandwich, some type of fruit (homemade leather usually b/c fresh fruit bruised so easily) a drink and a snack (homemade cookies mostly). I even sent fruit snacks that I called congealed fruit sugar.

    Over here there are very few schools for those younger than 15yrs that have caferterias. Some lower income area elementary (5-11yrs) schools have lunch programs-which have to abide by Canada's Food Guide. For some children that is their only meal that day.

    I can't see a government over here coughing up the money to hire 'lunch bag police'...it might cut into their 'redecorating the office fund' or 'take a holiday overseas fund'.

    I'm going to wager that this study goes to the same place as most studies, the archives of some dusty university library never to really make an impact in the day to day lives of lunch packers and imbibers.

    Quality food is a must...XTM you know that from being in the hospital, but some people are just really clueless. There is all this information but they can't be bothered to read or understand and change their ways.

    Alas, what is the world coming to? Supersize Me!

  12. Christianity was introduced to control the masses, now we have bloody guidelines and the PC brigade trying the same thing.

    Everyone is born of free will, we all have a right to choose what we eat and how we live, and it is about time the masses took a stand ,and tell these interfearing do gooders to piss off.

    This government needs a good sorting out, an unbiased person should be employed to sit at a desk, get all the members of parliament lined up... and the bloody councillors. All should be questioned on what job they do and if it is of benefit to everyone, then boot them out if their job is not vital, economically worthy or viable, that should save a lot of money.

    Next, get rid of judges that are over the age of 60 ,and have no concept of what living in the real world is like.

    Next, make prisons into prisons and not holiday camps, get the law breaking punks serving time breaking up rocks, the cell 4X6 matress on the floor and a bucket, be less crime on the streets.

    Next,peadophiles, off with their nuts with a rusty knife.

    Top Of The List.... Steam clean every bed frame, walls and lockers , floors and dividing curtains in every hospital room once a month, also kitchens and toilets, door handles.. everything.

    Very top of the list.. Hospital management should get their heads together and devise one menu for all hospitals, with wholesome food, and also school menu`s could be done the same, one menu of wholesome appetising food.


  13. My children love fruit and veg always have even brussel sprouts but I never tried to put it in their lunch boxes. Lunch boxes were for high energy, swapable sharable foods that didn't bruise or spoil in a warm box in a warm room. Every other meal was for balance taste and nutrition. Even now as young adults they will choose five a day as well as crisps snacks. They drink juice coke or milk as the fancy takes them etc etc. Both have always been very healthy few illness, bright energetic with a happy lust for life. Deny people treats and they yearn for them more.

  14. PLEASE can we just be left to get on with our lives and be allowed to make common sense decisions for ourselves. I would love my 12 year old to eat a healthy packed lunch every day. Unfortunately, if I put in anything resembling fruit or veg, it comes home in an inedible state. so I don't waste my time anymore. He has a fruit juice, a sandwich and something else such as crips, homemade cake, etc. Perhaps we should be permitted to see what the powers that be eat every day - I am sure they all practice what they preach (!), and maybe they should get on with running the country instead. P.s please tell me you will carry on blogging even when you are fit and well, XTM...

  15. I'll do my best to keep blogging, Bonnie. I'm a way off getting mended and I rely on you all for company. Off on Thursday to my hospital for x-rays and a check up with my consultant when I hope to say goodbye to my cast and start learning to walk.

  16. Good luck for Thursday XTM.... Any chance of you going to the hospital canteen and taking a sly pic of the menu ??...Lol

  17. Its just a survey carried out by an uni. Not exactly Big Brother stuff. Don't get your panties all in a twist.

  18. Chris of Melbourne OZ13 January 2010 at 08:09

    @ Anon 6.57
    See this thing in my hand?
    It's what they call the thin edge of the wedge.
    The rest of it's hidden up my sleeve.
    Those without apathy raise your right arm.
    (All right.put it it back down again).

    Be alert, very alert.
    Chris, Melbourne.

  19. Just watch your step TM don't want you slipping on the snow/ice and breaking your other leg. Maybe save walking practice for indoors only for a while. Sledge the rest. Good luck with Xrays and cast.

  20. Are the government aware that fruit is very high in sugar and also acidic so damaging to teeth? Maybe they should be looking at ways of producing low sugar non damaging fruit rather than encouraging our children to eat such unhealthy foods?

    School dinners provide a fabulous source of nutrition for kids. Ours are cooked on site and are really nice BUT some children don't want a cooked dinner in the middle of the day, some children find eating with others around them to be too stressful and others just don't know how to eat!

    I agree with the posters who say that some parents just do not know what to put in their childrens' lunches or even other meals. I would prefer to see money being spent in teaching parents how to be parents rather than focussing in on these specific, very narrow minded issues. At present in the UK expectant parents are given support to have the child but then they are left to get on with it and it can be very overwhelming for most new parents. If a parent is not supported appropriatley then, the future is not as good for anyone as it could be.

    So, perhaps instead of the short sighted policing of lunchboxes all this money could be spent in assisting parents to learn about parenting and so save the country lots of money in the process that could go towards providing good nutrition in hospital!

  21. Proper support of parents don't produce such good short-term headlines as policing lunchboxes. I fear it's all part of the 'all stick and no carrot' culture we live in. It's all about punishment and control instead of encouragement and support.

  22. Whatever you put in the lunchbox, they will swap or throw away anything they don't like. So as a parent you try to strike a balance. My daughter used to ask me to buy certain items just for swapping as her friend wasn't allowed them!

    When I went to secondary school (30+ years ago), all these lovingly prepared sarnies went in the bin on the way to the chippie (or snackbar as it was called in Holland). I was an exception but I had eating issues....

    I'd like to mention a successful experiment at our local secondary school. The old cafetaria got ripped out and replaced with an in-school outlet of a local baker's. No more school dinners, but things like toasties, jackets, pasta salads plus the usual sarnies and panini. It's been a roaring success as it looks fresh and welcoming and in summer staff and students can sit out on the terrace.


  23. That's a great idea, Cora. And it uses local business and enterprise to solve a problem.

  24. Indeed... here's the link. There is no picture of the terrace but it's great with umbrellas etc.


  25. When my grandson was at primary school (he started "big" school last September) my duaghter got a letter sent home asking her not to include home made cakes, pies and biscuits etc in his lunch box, along with his sandwiches, as they were unhealthy. She makes everything from scratch using mostly organic stuff and eggs from her own chickens and certainly no additives. The letter then went on to suggest she puts things like pork pies and chicken nuggets in his luncbox. I can't repeat here where she told the headmaster to stuff his ideas but it wasn't in an aubergine.

    No wonder children have food issues!


  26. I have to disagree with you on this one which is ironic considering your crusade to improve hospital food.
    The report is a report - without reports we have no knowledge of what is going on - it doesn't necessarily mean action has to follow.

    Meanwhile, more of the population are obese, more children are obese and will grow into obese adults. From this more of the population are getting ill with the consequences. In fact, I have heard that life expectancy may actually start to go down.

    By the way I have nothing against the obese as individuals. A couple of my closest friends are that big and I worry for their health.

    Is it really sensible for the government to keep slinging more and more money at the NHS for bigger and stronger beds, more winches to hoist patients the nurses cannot lift and more doctors, nurses and drugs without looking at the root causes.

    The goverment isn't well known for actually tackling the root cause of anything so this would be an achievement itself.

    If the populationg gets sicker and sicker and the it costs us money to heal them then perhaps the goverment would be expected to do something about it.