Letter: Feed your children well | AspenTimes.com
YOUR AD HERE »

Letter: Feed your children well

With the new school year, parents’ attention is turning to school lunches.

Traditionally, the U.S. Department of Agriculture had used the National School Lunch Program as a dumping ground for surplus meat and dairy commodities. Children consumed animal fat and sugary drinks to the point where one-third have became overweight or obese. Their early dietary flaws became lifelong addictions, raising their risk of diabetes, heart disease and stroke.

In recent years, several state legislatures asked their schools to offer daily vegetarian options, and 64 percent of U.S. school districts now do. Moreover, hundreds of schools and school districts, including Baltimore; Buffalo, New York; Detroit; Houston; Los Angeles; Miami-Dade, Florida; Oakland, California; Philadelphia; and San Diego have implemented Meatless Mondays. A New York City school went all vegetarian last year.

Current USDA school-lunch guidelines, mandated by the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act, require doubling the servings of fruits and vegetables, more whole grains, less sodium and fat, and meat-free breakfast. The challenge is to get students to eat the healthier foods.

Parents should work with school cafeteria managers to encourage consumption of healthy foods. Initiatives could include student recipe or poster contests, student gardens and/or Meatless Mondays. Detailed guidance is available at http://www.schoolnutrition.org/schoolmeals, http://www.fns.usda.gov/cnd, http://www.pcrm.org/health/healthy-school-lunches and http://www.vrg.org/family.

Andrew Teller

Aspen


Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Aspen and Snowmass Village make the Aspen Times’ work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.

For tax deductible donations, click here.
 

Start a dialogue, stay on topic and be civil.
If you don't follow the rules, your comment may be deleted.

User Legend: iconModerator iconTrusted User