Schools Are Now Offering Better And Healthier Lunches, New Report Suggests

Posted: Aug 29 2015, 11:55pm CDT | by , in News | Latest Science News


Schools Are Now Offering Better and Healthier Lunches, New Report Suggests
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Schools have made positive changes to create healthier meals after the implementation of Department of Agriculture's new policy

School lunches are getting better and healthier, a new report claims.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looked at the surveys done in schools in 2000, 2006 and 2014 to analyze what affect has been made on school cafeterias after the new rules from Department of Agriculture. 

CDC found that schools are offering more nutritious and healthy meals. Their meals contain more fruits and vegetables. They also included whole grain and low-sodium ingredients. 

“Almost all schools offered whole grains for breakfast and lunch. Most offered two or more vegetables and two or more fruits each day for lunch.” The report cited.

But just more than half schools turned to fresh or frozen vegetables and continued to use canned vegetables. Nevertheless, the started to use low-sodium canned vegetables instead of regular canned vegetables. Almost 65 percent cut the use of salt and 68 percent reduced the amount of sodium in the recipes or switched to low sodium recipes. 

“We’re encouraged that more schools are offering a variety of fruits and vegetables and finding the ways to reduce the sodium content of school meals,” said Caitlin Merlo, the lead author of the study.

 “Schools play a critical role in demonstrating and reinforcing healthy eating behaviors by making sure that nutritious and appealing foods and beverages are available and promoted to students. This is particularly important because children’s eating patterns carry into adulthood.”

CDC report indicates that schools are making positive changes to create healthier meets and trying to meet the nutritious standard. Though, improvement is still needed and schools are required to implement more healthy practices to improve the overall school meal standard.

“The standard requires serving more fruits, vegetables and whole grain and gradually reducing sodium over 10 years.” 

The report also indicates that students who eat school meals have better intake of key nutrients compared to those who never eat school meals.

“School meals are healthier now than ever before. We’ve made real progress but there is much more to do to help American children make food choices that will keep them healthy throughout their lives.”

The full report can be viewed here.

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The Author

Hira Bashir covers daily affairs around the world.




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