View Full Version : snacks at church
03-17-2005, 08:22 AM
Does anyone else have a problem with the snacks their kids are fed at church? I wouldn't care if it was fruit and crackers or ricecakes or something, but they give them breakfast bars and fruit snacks, fruit roll ups, handy snacks,cookies, etc! It burns me up. Sometimes I bring my kids something from home but they like the fruit snacks and all that (it is the only time they have it). I have spoken to them about it and their reasoning is they want the childrens church to have fun snacks so it is fun for the kids. But when I was a kid they had healthy snacks the parents took turns bringing. It wouldn't be as big of a deal to me if it was only once in awhile, like a birthday party, but this is once a week! I don't know what to do other than be the big mean parent who says they always can't have it. And while I am on this rant, my mom feeds them fruit snacks when we go to her house too.....sigh. At least I have an excuse with the youngest regarding cookies, she is allergic to chocolate. She breaks out like a spotted cow. Why can't they all do that with fruit snacks? I have never bought them and never will, they are just like candy! Help!
03-17-2005, 08:26 AM
i feel your pain....i am going through the same thing with my family. i am interested to see what adivice others have on this issue. hang in there. ;)
Juan, Judy & Alex
03-17-2005, 11:46 AM
If this is a child care provided by the church I would recommend that you care for your child during church hour. This way you know what snacks your child is getting especially if its burning you up. Most importantly it keeps the family together :)
Hope this helps
03-17-2005, 12:48 PM
Not all churches allow children into their service. Most services are going to be too boring for the kids because it's not at their level. Then when the kids are restless, it distracts the parents from listening to the message and disturbs those sitting around them.
I'd suggest packing their own snacks, but if they like the church snacks, that's going to be difficult.
Our church has the same stuff: rice krispie treats, goldfish, fruit by the foot, and other "fruit" snacks. :( But I don't have kids, so I don't have much in the way of input on how to get around it, sorry.
03-17-2005, 01:11 PM
Laurel, I don't have a problem on Sunday mornings, but at my children's schools, candy and junk food is so prevalent. I used to talk to them a lot more about what choices they make (when I an not there). Now, only occassionally do I talk with them about their choices. They do know basically what is considered junk food ( alot of the stuff out there!) and know that I don't want them to have it. But, at some point, you have to let them make their own decisions. You cannot always be right there with them. My kids are 14, 13 and 11. After they know what a healthy snack or meal is versus an unhealthy snack/meal, and they know my rules, it is basically up to them.
I suppose if they were really young, you could tell the adults not to feed them such junk!
I would love to always be in control of what my children choose, but, alas, I am not!
I understand your problem, don't have children of my own but am a nanny and very often surprised what parents allow their children to put in their mouth. So much fat, sugar and unhealthy things.
I think youre not the only one at the church who thinks about it that way, maby you can try to find other parents who like to see their children snack healthy and you could take care of the snacks together ??
Just a thought..
love, emmy ;)
03-17-2005, 03:50 PM
I had this problem with my daughter's school.
Her teacher sent home a school supply list and on the supply list was a bag of individually wrapped candy.
I found out they bribe the children...giving them a candy when they get questions correct etc.
I called the teacher and told her I could not support that. I then called the principle, and asked how could all these bright, educated people support setting our children up with emotional eating problems for the rest of their lives? I asked if she knew candy was made from highly processed, bleached sugar, dyes and chemicals? I asked if she was aware of the epidemic of diabetes and obesity?
I told her my daughter responds well to verbal praise and that we do not give her candy at home.
The principal told me teachers like to reward the children and candy is cheap.
SO I went to the healthfood store and bought a whole wack of organic, 100 percent dehydrated fruit leathers and sent them in to the school to be handed out as rewards if they felt the need to bribe the children.
The next week the teacher sent a note home to all the parents, saying a parent had made a wonderful suggestion of using healthy snacks in place of candy.
Also, I am not sure how old your children are, but I explain to my daughter why certain choices are better, and what happens after you ingest something, so that she is informed. She in turn informed most of her friends who at the age of 9 suddenly all went vegetarian. haha
My daughter turns down those choices now and is always armed with her own good ones.
So maybe you can provide some snacks to the church? Maybe you could sit down with whoever is in charge of that aspect and explain to them the nagatives and positives involved with the kids snack options. A lot of people truly do NOT HAVE A CLUE what happens in your body after you eat something.
The trick is to handle it all pleasantly and not come off like you are attacking their choices. Inform them. Another trick is to make your stand (nicely) and do not waver!
ALso with your family--give them the snacks you want your kids to have!
03-17-2005, 04:05 PM
Tracyinfo and Sweetgoddess are so right on this,
Anyway, I was responsible enough to not eat anything that was offered to me, no matter how much I liked it.
Sergie and Valya Boutenko talk about this in their wonderful raw un-cook book Eating without Heating, and they talk to parents about letting the kids choose their own way.
They were only allowed to eat raw food at home, and rebelled, until they saw major health changes in themselves. Valya talks about her cheating at school with cooked foods etc.
Then one day, she decided that she would "try" raw food 100% and see what happened that was 9 or 10 years ago. She was 7 or 8.
They explain that if you allow your kids to make their own choices, you are telling them that you respect, honor and trust them.
And it is very important that you explain why they should or shouldn't eat certain foods, what it really does to them inside, and how it affects them.
A really great friend of mine who does self help work, says, "The only way to keep your kids off of drugs, is to be a better salesman than the drug dealer." and he is right.
Sweetgoddess said that they don't use candy to reward their daughter, and so their daughter will grow up thinking of food differently than all those other kids, she will see food as fuel. Those other kids will see food as a reward, and whenever they need to be happier or feel better about themselves, they will go to the candy section, and chow down.
I don't know how old your kids are, but it is never too early to let them know that they are wonderful young people exactly as they are, and they can make good choices.
And then, let them make those choices.
I would definitely inform the church of your wishes, and I would send some "special" snacks for your own kids, but I wouldn't tell them not to give your kids anything, because if it is a reward, as bad as that is, you don't want your kids to think they weren't good enough, or were bad, or anything.
Besides, they will feel "different" enough allready, although if they were diabetic, you can be sure the church wouldn't give them that crappy junk
03-17-2005, 09:44 PM
Thanks for all the good advice you guys. My children are almost 11, almost 8, almost 7 and 3. I let my older ones do the choosing. My oldest refuses to eat anything kraft because of the poor nutrition and genetically modified food sources. That was awesome how the school changed Carmel! I was bribed with candy growing up and it sure effected me. Whenever I feel sad i want candy. UGH. And rawpriestess what you said about being a better salesmen is so right. My son is used to me checking what he eats because he was diagnosed with dairy allergy at 1 and irritable bowel syndrome at 3. And I was strict with their food! And what is it with well meaning people giving your toddler food without asking you? I can't tell you how many times someone gave my severly allergic toddler something and she would break out 10 min later. Everyone knows my dd is allergic to chocolate, she was even tested for it and yet people still bring chocolate cookies for their kids and try to share them with her. Sorry, I kindof went off on a ranty tangent there. But thanks, I do need to let them decide for themselves what they want. You gave me some stuff to think about. :)
Helen Of Tennessee
03-22-2005, 05:58 PM
My grandson is 18 months old. We started out when he was very young checking the "Medical Alert" box on his sticker (they wear stickers on their backs). We put on there NO GRAINS. I now put on there NO GRAINS, No SUGAR, NO DAIRY. I pack his own food and let the workers know it's in there. Since he usually has the same workers, they are aware. Sometimes when he's eating his banana, the other kids want it (funny how kids know what is good) and the workers will share his banana with some of the kids. This is fine with me. We try to pack plenty of food for him.
<>< Helen of Tennessee
03-23-2005, 12:37 AM
<<The principal told me teachers like to reward the children and candy is cheap.>>
OMG I'm getting the image of handlers training their dogs and giving them little treats each time they do something correctly.
AWESOME Carmel that you woke up that teacher and perhaps other teachers in the school. Just wondering, do schools have to obey your wishes if you say a food or particular group of food is off limits for your child? Or do you have to have a doctor's note and prove they are allergic?
I grew up on the "reward" system as well. Good girl=cupcake or ice cream for dessert. Bad girl= water for dessert. This also started my loathing of water. It was a punishment.
03-24-2005, 07:47 AM
Bad food IS cheap. My husband has been watching The Naked Chef (this guy in England). Turns out that the children over there eat so poorly that they have consitpation clinics for the children, and they are so stopped up that their body vomits poop! They get cheap food at school and then beg mom and dad for it at home. It was really sad to see this. They would beg for the bed food and refuse to eat the good food. And even once they were educated, they still wanted "turkey curls" and other stuff. It wasn't until the chef had the children MAKE their own turkey curls (take off teh good parts of the meat and what do you have left? the bowels, bones, etc. blend it in a blender, and some binders and other stuff to make it taste good and there you have it). Once the kids SAW what they were eating, they refused the turkey curls.
Anyways, all this to say that it could be worse. :)
We usually tell the teacher that they cannot have the snacks and then after church, we go home and I give the girls a treat (raw cookies). We have really educated the girls about what is not good for them and so they understand when we tell them not to eat it.
We have the same thing happen at church. My son who is 3 just finished cancer treatment and we don't give him sugar or junk food at all and we told them. They bring those snack cracker packs that are full of hydrogenated oils and I think they think those are healthy! Even worse, when we would take my son for chemo treatments everyone at the hospital tries to give them candy and snack cakes and pop. It's like, Hello, why do you think all these kids are here being treated for cancer? Very frustrating. :mad:
05-20-2005, 11:46 PM
omg!!! thats terrible!!! I can understand a healthy child being given candy ,but a sick one-they REALLY need to open theyre minds a bit!
reminds me of when I was dragged to a small town political party by my parents a few years ago and told the hostess that I couldnt eat a lot fat or sugar b/c of my lack of a gallbladder -and she asks "can you have some cake?" -no joke!
its terrible! and DONT get me started on hospital food! geez if its GOT to be such unhealthy food -ATLEAST make it tasty!
05-24-2005, 02:09 PM
>>>OMG I'm getting the image of handlers training their dogs and giving them little treats each time they do something correctly.<<<
I am currently a psychology student and what you are talking about is operant conditioning. I have studied it for so long that...yes, I have trained many dogs - because it is fast, easy, and great for the dog and the dog/person relationship. I think there is a difference between bribery and reinforcement. For instance if you show a piece of candy (or dog food) before you ask for the 'good behavior', then it is a bribe. However, if you see good behavior and 'boom' immediately reinforce it with candy, money, (or dog food) - it will increase the chances of that behavior happening again - that is reinforcement. ALL reinforcements (good and bad) INCREASE the likelyhood of a behavior happening again.
With that said, at my church - I have bags of all natural candy that I bought at Trader Joes - it isn't raw. I also have raw fruit strips and all natural juice. Although it isn't all raw, it is better than Kool-aid Jammers and a little debbies doughnut. What I have done is taped quarters, nickles, dimes, and a few dollars (sometimes a $5) to the bottom of individual (not all) of my snacks - and the rule is, they can't look, they take their chances. Of course, I know where the money is and I make sure that someone who is in the first three picking - will get the $5. The kids don't know if they will get the money, but watching other kids getting it is positive reinforcement and encourages them to pick also. However, with this game...you don't get to pick a little debbies or crud drink - if you don't win. You get what you get. You only get one pick. I also, educate them on food in general (not for or against, just information). I started this last month - out of 9 kids...all nine are choking down the raw fruit (because it has so far produced the most money). I must also point out that anyone who eats the raw fruit - I will again, randomly set a quarter down for them (reinforcing the behavior of eating it). So yes, a person could look at it as a 'bribe', but depending on when you show the candy, money, or whatever, changes it from a bribe to reinforcement. I look at it as; creating the behavior I want, reinforcing that behavior, making a habit and then no reinforcement is needed after that. Just like my dog, she is two years old and I no longer use treats of any kind, she doesn't know any bad behaviors...so she just does her good behavior. Same with my kids, I reinforce good behavior every chance I get.
Operant Conditioning is a great thing to use in classrooms... but I too, have hit a brick wall trying to change the teachers 'candy' to healthy alternatives. And...when the reinforcement turns to bribe - the people implimenting it, need to step back and regroup.
05-24-2005, 02:45 PM
I have also had trouble with our church Sunday school and my oldest daughter's kindergarten class. What gets me, is the school will send a notice home saying, "no peanut products due to an child's allergy," but they should also say is "leave sugar, hydrogenated oils, dyes, and petroleum-based presevatives at home too - that is, if you want your child to be healthy." My church also puts allergy allerts on the childrens' name tags, but really, who has time to read each and every tag before handing out snacks?
I agree that instead of special provisions being made for the individual (not that I disagree with packing special snacks), the system as a whole should be changed. No one would ever blame you for caring too much. Get involved in your church's nursery and youth program. Take this opportunity to educate the leaders of that area. Show them child health statitics and inform them how sugar, refined grains, and dye and preservatives can effect the disposition of all children - not just yours - making them harder to teach and control and therby loosing the purpose of Sunday school. You'll make a convincing argument, I gaurantee it!
05-24-2005, 06:46 PM
I went to Sunday School as a child, and don't remember ever getting treats, only at Christmas did we get one cupcake, and I took that out to my mom, because I didn't like the looks of the bugs on top (they were chocolate sprinkles) LOL I was 4 at the time. I can still remember sitting there looking at the cupcake with the bugs on top, and wondering, what are they trying to feed me?
So, I didn't even eat that one thing.
05-24-2005, 08:37 PM
We didnt get any treats ,only the adults -who got doughnuts ,so we would run upstairs to the adult sunday "class" and get them there ,until they finally locked the doors -it was sorta torture in our minds,since it was the ONLY exciting part of the day -oh well those mean adults are unhealthy b/c of it ........so I guess us kids came out on top!
I just joined your group, enjoyed the thread of what children are feed at church. however I have a 2 year old grandson who is so constipated and his parents won't listen to me suggest that maybe a diet change would help him. It is my sons child, my son used to listen to me until he gets a wife, who is great but of the sugar would big time. is there any information that I can get that would give the facts and help reinforce what I have tried to tell them? If I could even get them to read it. It is hard to see this little guy go through this, I worry that his health will get really serious. thanks
05-24-2005, 09:26 PM
here is a bbc article that I found a while back http://www.bbc.co.uk/health/conditions/constipation1.shtml
05-29-2005, 01:07 PM
Why not volunteer to be a Sunday School teacher, or on the board of the church, and then be an activist with your children's futures.
I remember a friends who bought a piece of property, and she wanted to build this spanish castle on it, and it was in a super conservative community, but it had this gorgeous water and bridge view, and was in a super prestigious area, so she bought the property, and joined the planning board, became friends with them all, then gave them her proposal, they accepted without a hitch.
She has since moved to Greece, and has built a huge Gecian castle there, but she got what she wanted by infiltrating their system.
So, you might try that with your Sunday School class.
05-29-2005, 03:23 PM
that is a VERY good idea.....
06-29-2005, 06:27 PM
There is a sign up sheet at our nursery at our church. I put on there for comments, do not feed this baby gold fish. They have a huge box on the top shelf.
So I try to bring her snacks I think she will eat. I brought raisins last sunday and all the kids were eating the raisins.
I told the nursery worker, that is fine they can share her snacks. It was a lot better than the gold fish.
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