Why all the fuss about school lunches?
Typically, kids get about 30 to 50% of their calories while at school, so that means they’re getting a good portion of their nutrition outside the house. Too many children aren’t getting enough nutrients for their growing body, even many overweight children aren’t getting proper nutrition and the changes to school lunch programs will help ensure children get enough fruit, veggies, whole grains and dairy products.
What’s changed since I was in school?
Previously school lunches were high in fat and salt, and the most common vegetables were French fries and ketchup (if you consider those veggies).
Now school lunches are much lower in salt and fat.
Instead of fruit cocktail, we’re seeing fresh and locally grown fruit. Some schools have fruit bins where children can choose their own fruit.
Fun vegetable choices have been added such as carrot sticks with ranch dressing and even salad bars for kids to build their own.
Whole grains have been added to sandwich bread, buns and pizza dough.
Meat will be lean, such white chicken breast and meat alternatives such as beans.
And milk will be non fat or low fat, white or flavored milk. New Flavored milk has 38% less sugar and just 31 calories more than white milk.