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Building a basic budget (MB)

Subject Area: Health

Link(s) to the Manitoba Health Curriculum:
  • Develop attitudes and behaviours that promote healthy lifestyle practices for lifelong fitness and social-emotional well-being.
  • Assess and revise personal health and academic goals (e.g., fitness goal, movement skill goal, nutrition goal, active living goal, personal health-practice goal, academic goal…) to enhance health and well-being.
Brief Overview of the Lesson:

After reading an article about the importance of healthy food choices the class will be divided into groups to plan a week’s menu. They will see that the cost of fast foods versus home-made meals is much higher and not nearly as healthy.

Estimated Time Required for Implementation:

One class period

Materials Needed:
  • Copy of the article provided on junk food
  • Copies of the Meal Planning Chart
  • Food flyers from grocery stores, access to online supermarket ads and fast food menus
Suggested Implementation Strategy:
  • Use a smart board to post and to read the article called Junk food is poor fuel for your body.
  • Ask the class if they have any idea how much their family spends on food during the week.
  • Tell the class that they will be planning and estimating the cost of food.
  • They will be comparing fast food menus to home-made menus.
  • Depending on the class size, divide the class into 4–6 groups.
  • Half of the groups will plan and budget the cost of fast food meals, the other half are to plan and budget the cost of home-made meals.
  • They may use food flyers, online food ads, or fast food menus to help them estimate the cost of their meals.
  • Allow time to compare and share their findings at the end of the period, or next period.
Options for Consideration:
  • The teacher may want to allow students, for homework, to look up the cost of the foods and report back to their groups next period.
Extended Learning Opportunities:
  • What can you do? Lobby your school cafeteria for healthier food choices. Ask them to include a range of low-price healthy food choices.

Junk Food is Poor Fuel for your Body

Good nutrition is essential for everyone, but it’s especially important for growing teenagers.

About 9 in 10 teenagers eat junk food every day. This might be fizzy drinks and high kilojoule snacks like potato chips. However, your body can’t run properly on inferior fuel. A teenager who eats fast food regularly is more likely to put on weight than a teenager who eats fast food only occasionally.

  • A diet consisting of healthy meals and snacks will boost your intake of nutrients, such as calcium, which is required for strong bones.
  • Eating well doesn’t mean you must be a health food freak—a good diet allows for your favourite junk foods occasionally.

While a mid-life heart attack might seem too far away to be real, it may surprise you to know that you could have health problems already. A poor diet can cause weight gain, high blood pressure, acne, constipation, and fatigue as well as concentration problems—even when you’re young.
Compared to home-cooked food, junk food (which includes fast food) is almost always:

  • Higher in fat, particularly saturated fat
  • Higher in salt
  • Higher in sugar
  • Lower in fibre
  • Lower in nutrients such as calcium and iron
  • Served in larger portions, which means more kilojoules

Compare the prices of junk foods against the prices of healthier food options to see that ‘healthy’ doesn’t have to mean ‘expensive’.

Excerpts from:

Chart - English