|Written By: Jack: Friday, 17 February 2012|
How many of you recognize school lunch as a square piece of pizza, a scoop of wilted and colorless vegetables, chocolate milk, and of course a side of french fries? We’re guessing that most of you have seen this on your lunch tray before. With more than 12 million young people considered overweight or obese in the U.S., its time to ask the question…. should we be serving this food for school lunch?
First Lady Michelle Obama and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack think the answer is NO! This month, the two met at a school here in Alexandria, VA to announce a school lunch nutritional overhaul. Foods served will have less sodium, more whole grains, and more fruits and veggies.
This will be the first change to school lunches in the last 15 years. Now these changes have not come easily. Food companies and potato growers lobbied hard to prevent a change to the status quo. Why? The answer is simple…. They are making a lot of money. Limiting the amount of fries that students eat and taking away the frozen squares of pizza will hurt their profits.
Unfortunately, the changes won’t go quite as far as the First Lady had hoped. Pizza will still be considered a vegetable, and students will still be able to get fries every day of the week if they want to. However, all flavored milk (we’re looking at you, chocolate milk) will have to be low fat, and the government will subsidize schools looking for healthier food options.
Positive change is taking place, slowly but surely. Studies have shown that students who eat healthy lunches have more energy, and are more attentive and ready to tackle the dreaded afternoon “blues.” We need Y St. to continue working hard on the ActOut campaign—the more information we can gather about the issue, the quicker we can make these types of changes take effect!