The Scarlet Cheese Sandwich

Apparently elementary schools in California are having a tough time with delinquent school lunch debts. So, if the parents won’t pay, the kids will. Instead of a customary school lunch, children with debt get a meesly cheese sandwich. Richard Marosi of The Los Angles Times reports:
They told students with deadbeat parents that they had only one lunch choice: a cheese sandwich.


The sandwich, served on whole wheat bread, came with a clear message: Tell your parents to pay up — or no more pizza and burgers for you.

Cheese sandwiches and other "alternate meals" have been added to menus in school districts across the country as they try to take a bite out of parents' lunch debts…

…Most schools across the country have introduced alternate meals, said Erik Peterson, a spokesman for the School Nutrition Assn., an Alexandria, Va.-based organization for school nutrition professionals.

Orange County's Capistrano Unified School District serves crackers with peanut butter or cheese. The Los Angeles Unified School District gives children half a sandwich and a piece of fruit. Peanut butter-and-jelly sandwiches are a common alternate meal, but not a very effective one.

"It seemed to be one of the children's very favorite meals, so that wasn't productive," said Beth Taylor, nutrition director for the Johnston County School District in North Carolina, where such sandwiches were tried. Taylor said switching to vegetable and fruit trays changed everything. Among last week's menu items for students with lunch balances: crunchy cole slaw, fried squash and steamed cabbage. "The outstanding debt has been reduced to nothing," she said.
Now, I don’t think anyone should welsh on a debt, but—at the risk sounding mellow dramatic—should any child suffer for sins of the father? No, the answer is no, always no. Especially when you consider the punishment, cheese slapped in between sliced wheat bread—yuck! I present exhibit A:


We all know how Dr. Fuhrman feels about cheese, not only is it one of the worst foods you can eat for health and longevity, but as he explains it is loaded with milk hormones that are very detrimental to human health. From Disease-Proof Your Child:
Cheese consumption during childhood is a major concern because it takes ten pounds of milk to make one pound of cheese. Besides the bovine growth hormone given to cows, their milk contains estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, prolactin, and other natural cow hormones. Cheese not only is richer in saturated fat, but is a more concentrated source of these hormones. These milk hormones can exert effects on humans.1 The more you drink or eat dairy, the more hormones you get, and cheese consumption magnifies the negative aspects of cow’s milk.
And wheat bread, granted, whole-wheat bread is a step up from white bread, albeit a small one. But look at that picture, does that really look like a rustic whole-grain type wheat bread to you? Looks like white bread with a bad tan to me. In Eat to Live Dr. Fuhrman explains this type of whole wheat bread is bad news:
Whole wheat that is finely ground is absorbed into the bloodstream fairly rapidly and should not be considered as wholesome as more coarsely ground and grittier whole grains. The rapid rise of glucose triggers fat storage hormones.
Here’s what amazes me about all this, in spite of all the school food reforms going around now, schools are willing to throw all that away, punish the child and compromise their health for a couple of bucks. Tell you what Chula Vista, next time you want to serve garbage to some innocent kid give me a call and I’ll pick up the lousy tab.
1. De Leon DD, Wilson DM, Powers M, Rosenfeld RG. Effects of insulin-like growth factors (IGFs) and IGF receptor antibodies on the proliferation of human breast cancer cells. Growth factors 1992; 6; 326-336. Outwater JL, Nicolson A, Barnard N, dairy products and breast cancer: the IGF-1 estrogen, and bGH hypothesis. Medical hypthesis 1997; 48; 453-461.
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