Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Empty Plate: Kids Are Being Bullied to Skip Lunch at School

Whether because of pressure to be thin or more direct targeting, some students go hungry.

US News & World Report, August 24, 2015

"Anti-bullying curriculum has created a generation of kids who are much more aware of overt, classic bullying. However, bullying and peer pressure take many forms, and at times can be very difficult to spot. One alarming trend happening in some school cafeterias is kids facing pressure to not eat lunch, or to eat much less than they actually want.

This troubling practice is becoming more common, according to Dana Thompson, a registered dietitian who works with families through her diabetes practice in Glendale, Arizona. 'One of the things that is being reported is the significant amount of peer pressure exerted by certain girls to not eat lunch,' she says. 'Girls are avoiding eating or throwing out their lunch for fear of rejection by cliques.'

Thompson explains this is an act of bullying because it appears to be pressure applied purposefully – that is, the victim is targeted with dirty looks if she eats her lunch or indirect statements intended to make her feel ashamed about how much she eats. Read more

For tips and resources to talk to your child about preventing bullying, visit our Resource Center here

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