Health Net­work

- A Typ­i­cal School Lunch in Italy

DREAM TEEN Magazine - - Contents -

School lunch pref­er­ence. You will be sur­prised to see what Italy has on its school lunch menu.

Which School Lunch Would You Pre­fer?

When it comes to school lunches, there is a big dif­fer­ence in what the US con­sid­ers a healthy lunch and what Italy calls the stan­dard lunch.

The menus be­low speak vol­umes as to what is con­sid­ered a healthy meal in Italy and the United States. In Italy, cafa­te­ria worker brings the lunch trays to the chil­dren’s ta­ble. They even sit down in­nen ta­ble clothes and place set­ting with dishes and wa­ter glasses. Wa­ter is stan­dard and the chil­dren love it. The learn how to each in a so­cial set­ting. The menus in Italy are set up two months in ad­vance by the can­tine man­age­ment staff, and then sent to a cer­ti­fied di­eti­tian who makes small “cor­rec­tions.” The di­eti­tian might take out a small choco­late éclair and re­place it with a kiwi for dessert if she thinks there’s too much sugar that week. Or she may mod­ify sug­gested menus by adding more or fewer car­bo­hy­drates, veg­eta­bles, fruits, or pro­tein to keep the bal­ance right. Al­most all foods are pre­pared right in the kitchen; they’re not ready-made frozen. This means mashed pota­toes, most desserts, sal­ads, soups, and cer­tainly the main dishes are pre­pared daily. Treats are in­cluded — the oc­ca­sional slice of tarte, a dol­lop of ice cream, a del­i­cacy from the lo­cal pas­try shop. Check out th­ese photos of a school lunches be­ing pre­pared on the premises. Be­low are photos and a de­scrip­tion of one week’s worth of school menus, taken dur­ing the last few weeks of this school year in June. French el­e­men­tary school stu­dents don’t go to school on Wed­nes­days, so that’s why there are only four meals!

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