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Lunches, Schools, and Snacks. - A Quick Guide to Nutrition, Allergies, and Schooling at Home. - No Nuts!

Lunches, Schools, and Snacks. - A Quick Guide to Nutrition, Allergies, and Schooling at Home.

 

 

Hundreds of healthy foods can cause allergic reactions. But only 7 common foods cause more than 90% of all children’s food allergies.

Milk, peanuts, eggs, tree nuts, wheat, soy & sesame

Whether or not you have allergenic school-kids in your home, being informed can help you choose what’s best during this unusual school year.

 

If your school district has opted for distance learning, here are suggestions and advice for good nutrition at home, with calories and protein to match recommended school lunch standards. We’ve got some tasty, convenient ideas for kids with common food allergies, too.

 

If you have children with food allergies, you’re not alone. 

You may already know that there are an estimated 12 million U.S. households with at least one person with food allergies.

 

Depending on the measure of severity, the FDA and nutritional advocacy groups estimate there are perhaps 32 million allergy sufferers in the US alone

 

 

If you’re an allergy -free household, then you’re still making

sure your kids are getting good nutrition. And if you’re a teacher

using ZOOM, your kids are at home on ZOOM with their teacher, probably thinking about lunch. 

 

A little deeper look at common children’s food allergies.

By the time a food-allergic child has reached pre- school age, they’ve probably already gone through multiple tests and dietary alternatives to insure safe, healthy meals and snacks. 

 

 

 

 

 

According to the Mayo Clinic, milk, peanuts, eggs, tree nuts, wheat, soy, and sesame are the leading cause of allergy episodes in kids. Gluten is an enzyme intolerance which is different from an allergy, but can be just as serious.

 

 

 

 

 

Seafood and shellfish can also cause very serious reactions. Allergies to sesame are gaining new attention. Legumes (beans and peas), and other fruits & vegetables are less common allergies, and are often mistaken for something else.

 

 

1. Dairy Products

Milk, cheese, butter, yogurt and other milk by-products like whey protein. If your child is allergic to cow’s milk, allergies to goat’s milk and sheep’s milk may also be likely.

 

Many kids with dairy allergies grow out of them by age 3 or 4. Remember, almond milk and dairy substitutes made from soy can also be allergenic. Always consult your family doctor.

 

USDA school lunch guidelines recommend 5 cups of milk per week. Obviously this doesn’t work for an allergenic child.

 

 

 

 

 

Fruit juice at lunch may not provide as much calcium or protein as milk, but can provide a small % of a child’s daily allowance.

 

 

 

 

 

Dried fruits like apricots and raisins provide some calcium as well as a small amount of protein.

 

 

 

2. Peanuts

Peanuts are the 2nd most prevalent allergy trigger for kids, according to the Mayo Clinic. Peanuts are cousins to peas and beans, but kids with peanut allergies are less likely to have an allergic reaction to legumes.

 

Be on the lookout for peanuts, peanut oil, and other peanut by-products. Peanut butter can show up as a surprise ingredient in many prepared foods.

 

Peanuts are a fair source of protein, but not essential to a child’s diet, according to the American Pediatric Association.

3. Eggs

If your child has an egg allergy, it’s most likely caused by the protein in the egg whites. It’s a lot simpler

to get the needed protein from another source, and just avoid eggs entirely. 

 

Be careful of protein shakes and other supplements. They’re generally made from eggs, whey and other milk or soy by-products.

.

 

4. Tree Nuts

Allergies to tree nuts are different from peanut allergies and occur separately. However, it is likely that a peanut allergy will be accompanied by allergies to tree nuts like almonds, walnuts, hazelnuts or cashews. You are already a careful label reader, so consider this as a reminder: READ ALL FOOD LABELS CAREFULLY, and always consult your doctor..

 

5. Wheat

If your child has an egg allergy, it’s most likely caused by the protein in the egg whites. It’s a lot simpler

to get the needed protein from another source, and just avoid eggs entirely. 

 

Be careful of protein shakes and other supplements. They’re generally made from eggs, whey and other milk or soy by-products.

.

 

Peanuts are a fair source of protein, but not essential to a child’s diet, according to the American Pediatric Association.

6. Soy

Soy, including soybean oil and soy protein rank number six on the Mayo Clinic and CDC lists. Soy is found in many foods like high-protein snack bars, including our own NoNuts! bars. Many soy-based products are suggested by the USDA for school lunches. However, if your child is not allergic to soy, it can be a good source of protein.

.

 

7. Sesame

Soy, including soybean oil and soy protein rank number six on the Mayo Clinic and CDC lists. Soy is found in many foods like high-protein snack bars, including our own NoNuts! bars. Many soy-based products are suggested by the USDA for school lunches. However, if your child is not allergic to soy, it can be a good source of protein.

.

 

Milk, peanuts, eggs, tree nuts, wheat, soy & sesame

Depending on age and grade, school age kids need between 19 and 52 grams of protein per day. With so many different allergy concerns, what are the healthiest sources of protein for kids with allergies? Here are some ideas for finding the right combination for nutritious school lunches and snacks at home.

 

If your kids have allergies, the healthiest options are plant-based proteins like oats, sunflower seeds, carrot sticks, beans, and avocados. Fruits like apricots, kiwifruit, bananas and oranges are good alternatives to milk, nuts and eggs. Dried fruits like raisins and apricots also provide a couple of grams of protein. It all adds up.

 

Combining a protein & fiber-rich snack bar with dried fruit can be a convenient, nutritious afternoon snack for kids schooling at home. Dried apricots or raisins, a nut-free, gluten-free protein bar and an 8 oz. glass of juice deliver between 400 and 420 calories and 15 grams of protein.

 

 

USDA Recommended school lunch calories

K thru 5th grade: 550 to 650 calories

6th thru 8th grade: 600 to 700 calories

9th thru 12th grades: 750 to 850 calories

 

Lean meats like turkey and chicken are good sources of protein for kids. Sliced chicken or turkey breast with veggies makes a great sandwich. Look for gluten-free oat bread, rice bread, or potato bread. No wheat, no gluten. Always check the ingredients for milk.

 

 

Gluten-free Rice bread, lettuce, tomato and turkey

 

Protein Requirements for a healthy diet*

   K thru 6th grade: 19 to 34 grams

   7th & 8th grade: 38 grams

   9th thru 12th grades

 - Girls – 46 grams

 - Boys – 52 grams

  *May vary by weight and activity level.


No Nuts! ™ nut-free protein & energy bars.

When we set out to make No Nuts bars, we already knew what life is like for an allergenic parent.

 

What do you do with a growing kid with food allergies? You worry about the ingredients in everything, looking for peanuts, walnuts, almonds, pecans, hazelnuts, milk, cheese, wheat, soy, and more. You know the rest.

 

While schooling at the kitchen table may be the issue of the season, we also figured that allergy-friendly

snacks aren’t just for children. Moms need energy, too.

 

Like everybody else, people with food allergies, including teens and grownups, crave snacks that are

indulgent as well as “better for you”.

 

And guess what? Nobody misses the nuts.

 

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