Poll: Should States Ban Junk Food at Schools?

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By: , SparkPeople Blogger
5/10/2012 10:00 AM   :  66 comments   :  14,742 Views

Earlier this year, Coach Tanya blogged about the changes being made to school lunches, but five years ago, the state of California had already started to cut down on junk food in school cafeterias. With the changes that were made in California high schools, there have been some interesting findings that may help reduce childhood obesity. The law in California put limits on the amount of fat, sugar and calories that are found in their cafeteria’s, along with the foods and snacks that are available on school grounds, such as vending machines.
 
According to a recent study, the ban on junk food in California high schools has been found to help the students consume fewer calories (approximately 160) each day compared to students in other states. While 160 fewer calories may not seem like much, cutting back just that small amount each day can still help teens avoid long-term weight gain, along with reversing the rapidly rising obesity rates. Even with this study, it seems that schools still have a long way to go in regards to offering complete nutritious meals and snacks. However, California seems to be starting a healthier trend for students while at school. While the students may not be eating all healthy foods at school (or at home), there is now more emphasis on providing healthier options for students by setting some nutritional requirements on the food that is avaliable to them.

Dr. Taber, an author of the study does mention that he recognizes that the "school-based laws have a limited scope because students only consume about 25 percent of their calories at school" and that "no one sector or environment is going to be the magical cure." Knowing that students consume 75 percent of their calories outside of school, perhaps this will be just one piece of the puzzle to help slow the rising childhood obesity trend.

Do you think banning junk food from schools will help with reducing childhood obesity?


Should states ban junk food at schools?



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Comments

  • 66
    In the state I grew up in, school lunches were made from food that was labeled "Grade D -- for Prisons and Schools" . It doesn't seem right, does it? I knew a lot of kids who would forego the cafeteria and buy soda and a chocolate bar for lunch. Knowing the kids I went to school with, though, a ban on junk food would just mean that an underground candy/soda ring would start up... - 9/30/2014   12:49:11 AM
  • FOXGLOVE999
    65
    First and foremost, school lunches should be edible. My children simply would not eat school lunches because they tasted so bad. We have gotten free school lunches for a long time, but I really only do it because it qualifies you for other programs, like free SAT testing and free college applications. If you do pay for it, it's not that cheap, and it's horrible, like prison food. Given that they can't seem to make something edible regardless of how healthy it is, I doubt they could make something healthy and edible. - 9/29/2014   10:26:42 AM
  • 64
    I say ban junky parents. Problem solved. - 7/2/2014   1:29:30 PM
  • 63
    For those who don't want the "government" to control what the kids eat, they already do and have for as long as I can remember. Does anyone remember ketchup being added as a vegetable?? One of the first steps to eating healthy is get rid of the unhealthy stuff so all you have to choose from is good. To do this for the kids in our schools makes perfect sense. They can get their junk food at home, why should the schools provide it?
    - 7/2/2014   5:46:48 AM
  • 62
    Junk food is available everywhere -- why does it also have to be in schools? - 2/28/2014   6:33:04 PM
  • 61
    I do not believe a ban is the answer. Education, options, and if possible maybe a garden at the school and help get the kids involved in planting and harvesting fresh veggies to use in the meals. Increasing knowledge will go a lot farther than banning. - 1/13/2014   1:23:05 AM
  • 60
    I am of 2 minds on this. On the one had, sometimes school meals make up the largest portion of what a child eats during the day (particularly in low-income areas). That being said, an effort should be made to make what they get at school as healthy as possible since they are less likely to get such healthy options at home. Also, most schools have some type of physical education class, and many have sport teams etc. I don't understand how they can expect children to have the energy and focus necessary to perform well in the required P.E. classes (I do understand that the teams are optional). I remember never feeling like I had much energy in school, and as a result my attention wandered, I didn't perform up to a consistent standard in P.E. (which was embarrassing because my Mom was the P.E. teacher for some of those years), I didn't do well on tests, my memory suffered etc. Yes we ate well at home, but there was a huge gap of time between breakfast at home at about 5:30am or 6am and lunch at like 11 or 12. There was also a gap of at least 4 hours (sometimes more) between lunch and being able to eat at home in the evening. That gap was longer if the school bus took longer to go through its route. Some kids didn't get home until after 5 or closer to 6. And let's not talk about nights where we had to go right back in an hour or 2 for PTA meetings, chorus or band performances etc. It was usually fast food on those nights. So despite eating well at home, the gaps made it such that what we at at school was also critical to our focus and performance for the day.

    Yet I also feel that some of the responsibility should be on the parents or guardians. The problem is not every family is working with the same set of circumstances. We all have to remember that. A parent may want to give the best to their child, but what happens when they don't really have the money to do so? What happens when they are a single parent who works 2 jobs and still struggles to pay for childcare? In cases like that (which are many in the US), what a child eats at school is super important. I do believe in giving education and choices, but those things require positive reinforcement in order to "stick." A school is a great place to get that, since students often have health or P.E. classes anyway.

    I think before a school district enacts a ban, they should reach out and get feedback from parents and other community leaders to create a standard definition for "junk food" in their area. Only then can everyone be in agreement. I think it is a step in the right direction, but just needs a bit of tweaking.

    I don't believe that we should just let everyone choose. Some parents need help, and schools are supposed to be there for that. Also, the rest of us foot the bill whenever anyone with medical emergencies goes to the ER and can't pay or doesn't have insurance. That means I'm paying for them to be unhealthy, and that doesn't seem right. I don't mind my tax dollars going toward thinks like ensuring everyone has adequate health care, but I don't like the idea of supporting someone who is stubborn and just wants excuses to do what they want without regard for themselves, their families or the tax burden on this country. The very least we can all do is focus on the things we can control, and eating better is one of them. Why shouldn't schools, at which children spend the majority of their day during the school year, assist with that? - 12/11/2013   8:05:54 PM
  • FLAKKA
    59
    it is our choice to make and the cosecuences will be paid.. but if we are not capable of making the right dessitions then someone really has to do so for us, because we are making ourselfs fat and its not only the pain that us as a person goes throuegh but the one that we put all of our love ones though as well they suffer along with us and if we dont care then there is a big problem. - 11/13/2012   5:10:51 PM
  • 58
    Yes, I think junk food should be banned from school completely! At my son's school, it is not just school lunches that are horrible, but what the teachers give the students. I have known teachers to bring donut holes for 1 st period, and I am not talking about 1 or 2 times, I am talking about on a weekly bases. It was horrible, my son just ate a healthy meal not more than an hour before! Candy bars, popcorn, nachos, ice cream, these were some of the treats given to the students for doing good on a "Pre-test", don't reward a kid with food!!! This was not the only teacher that did this, the principal defended this. Come on! Finally, after enough complaining, not just by myself, but by a lot of others, the treats stopped. (during this time, I was having to monitor my son's blood sugars) luckily his sugars leveled out and back to normal, but I still have to take him every 6 months for a glucose test. I am diabetic, so I saw the symptoms in him and knew something was not right. So at home, I take care and try and teach him healthy eating. So I was very upset with the school. I cannot believe they did these things daily and never told us parents. It was unbelievable. - 7/31/2012   8:48:31 PM
  • 57
    There are some children that what they eat in school may be the only real meal they eat all day. School lunch should be healthy! These are our children and we should be giving them the best opportunity to be able to learn and grow.
    This isn't about choice this is about nutrition and health. If a parent objects to their child eating healthy foods there is a serious issue with their parenting!!
    There is no reason what so ever for soda, candy, and chips to be sold in a public school. Ask any teacher how easy it is to teach a class of kids that are either hyped up or coming down from eating sugar, artificial additives, caffeine and fat! - 5/16/2012   1:50:19 PM
  • 56
    No, people should have the freedom of choice and the government should not be controlling what people eat. I'd rather see a tax on junk food than see the government take away people's right to choose what does or doesn't go into an individual's body. While I don't condone eating junk food, where does it stop? It's our bodies and our health. - 5/16/2012   11:54:09 AM
  • 55
    My daughter's children attend a school where they have chefs, not cooks, and the cafeteria is not called that, but is referred to as "the dining room".

    Do you think this would have a positive reaction since we don't think of serving junk food in the dining room. - 5/15/2012   6:52:25 PM
  • 54
    How do you define "junk food"? The term is being used very broadly these days. Are we talking about Cheetos and Coke or cafeteria pizza (which can be nutritious if made correctly). - 5/14/2012   4:47:45 PM
  • 53
    Even tho this will NOT eliminate the problem (kids esp. teenage ones, will find a way to get their junk food fixes, no matter what) but it will certainly help by NOT having this garbage readily available in their 5-day-a-week environment. I KNOW it would've helped me ... and we didn't have vending machines in our cafeteria till I was a junior! (1970 -71) - 5/14/2012   3:19:39 PM
  • 52
    This isn't the answer to everything but how about asking why so many kids eat school food. I know that there are people who can't afford to send their kids to school with lunch but surely they are the exception (maybe not in all school districts). My Mom packed me a lunch, when I was old enough I packed myself a lunch, the cafeteria was not an option. Seems like a lot of people want the school to do everything for them, raise their kids, make sure that they do their homework, teach them about proper nutrition. How about a little bit more personal responsibility? - 5/14/2012   9:50:22 AM
  • 51
    We feed our kids in the schools breakfast and lunch. In my area 80% of the population of children is on free lunch. This means I am paying to feed these kids horrible un nutritious meals. Poptarts for breakfast will never be good in my book. Pizza every day for lunch? The schools count the ketchup packet as a fruit. I am disgusted having to serve this, yes I taught for 30 years and saw maybe 1 nutritious meal about 1 time a month. - 5/14/2012   8:43:40 AM
  • 50
    I voted yes on the ban but i am NOT talking about the vending machines I am talking about the cafateria foods. my niece's school meals are horrible. a typicail tuesday meal is;
    corn,
    2 cookies,
    pizza,
    milk
    bread roll
    I am sorry but not only no but HELL NO!! except for the miniscule pieces of onion and bell pepper on the pizza where is the veggies?! Corn is not a veggie it is a grain. how about this
    1 pizza slice
    green beens
    apple slices
    milk
    1 cookie
    If you must have "extra curicular" junk food use it as a reward. when I was a kid if I got a A on a big test my grand parents took me to the DQ for a dilly bar. See when you use junk foods as a reward they get it into there heads that junk food is a some times thing. so ban junk foods from school lunches and vending machines. and use the junk food as a reward simple easy and efficent - 5/13/2012   2:00:44 PM
  • 49
    In the 1960s our high school had one food machine in the cafeteria used for study hall. The only items were delicious apples, peanuts and milk. That was your only choice. If you were hungry it gave you brain food not junk. Also at that time school hot lunches were made with real food and veg and fruit not mixes. A lot of food was thrown away so they went to the thinking give the kids the food they want instead of what they need. Well if kids had their way Sugar and fat would be their whole diet. We don't let kids eat that way at home so they should not eat that way at school. Maybe schools could help by introducing different veg and foods as part of curriculum in science, geography/culture etc. I think parents org. and communities should put pressure on the schools to get rid of all advertising and perks from food companies and put healthy food in front of our kids. - 5/13/2012   1:35:23 PM
  • 48
    I have four sons. They are all healthy, active, and if anything...underweight (my youngest is 14 yo. 6'1", and 149 lbs...that is skinny). Schools should work on the options that they are providing our young people. I mean, have you gone down and looked at these meals? Even their "nutritious" options are complete junk. Baloney sandwiches? Gross. Prepackaged chicken nuggets? Disgusting. Canned fruit? Have the chocolate instead.

    There is nothing wrong with a burger or a slice of pizza for lunch for a growing active kid. I think we have enough focus on "don'ts" when it comes to our young folks. Don't play here. Don't hang out in the park. Don't skateboard, rollerblade, bike here. We block them from doing normal healthy things that young people do out of fear that they may get hurt, and then we gripe that they are all fat and sitting in the basement on the computer all the time. Let go a bit, and trust that you raised a smart youngster.

    Healthy kids will automatically regulate their diets if given options.

    I would be more interested in schools cutting back on the pre-packaged, over nitrated crap and giving options that contain actual foods. You can make mass amounts of macaroni and cheese from a recipe just as effectively as you can make boxed powdered frankenfood macaroni and cheese.
    - 5/13/2012   10:57:41 AM
  • ADELITADB
    47
    Government control makes it worse. They are the ones who came up with a food pyramid and GMO foods that go against centuries of how humans actually ate and stayed healthy. Eleven whole grains daily????? Seriously????? Insane. My grandparents neverate like that. Adding government to anything just makes it worse. Get parents and schools together locally and make better choices that way. - 5/13/2012   10:37:44 AM
  • 46
    I don't understand why the focus is on "banning" anything. Why isn't the focus on providing students with nutritious options?

    To some extent, you have to make sure the kids will eat something. To the same extent, you don't have to provide the worst of the worst junk food.

    I also agree with comments about vending machines. We NEVER had vending machines in my schools, so when I saw them when I started teaching a few years ago, I was astounded. Do kids really need access to gummy snacks in the middle of the day? - 5/13/2012   9:22:09 AM
  • 45
    schools teach so what children learn at school and when they go with mom or dad to the grocery can help. If kids learn to make good choices at school it can carry over to home if the parents listen to them and stay away from fast foods - 5/12/2012   7:35:02 AM
  • 44
    People are free to choose what is unhealthy for them. Let those who want to have huge weight, to have what they want. Instead of banning, give them more info and more knowledge about nutrition facts, i.e. give them awareness no more than this. Freedom is holy and shouldn't be touched ! - 5/12/2012   6:35:24 AM
  • 43
    There can be a problem with banning junk food when the schools don't know what is junk and what is healthy. I read a few times about a school in the southeast (can't remember exactly where) that took a little girl's lunch her mother made her (chicken strips, apple and drink) and said it was unhealthy. Instead they gave her a fatty hamburger and french fries. Teaching them that kind of food is healthier than what she had won'd do them a bit of good. - 5/11/2012   7:37:08 PM
  • 42
    When I was at school they took all the fast food off the menu but they didn't replace it with anything so instead of lots of healthy options, there was hardly anything to choose from, if the fast foods are taken away they need to be replaced with healthy alternatives so there are choices. Schools also need to teach children about nutrition so that they can make educated choices. - 5/11/2012   3:20:43 PM
  • 41
    im sorry but i dont agree with this becouse you have to teach your children what to eat and how much they should eat i feel like this is something else that falls on the shoulders of the care givers at home, parents or whoever takes care of the children, its not bad to eat 1 peice of chocolate its bad to eat a whole bag of chocolate, and usually if children dont have this stuff at home they have no desire to have it at school, yes i know there are exceptions to every rule but like we do with anything else we have to teach our children whats right and trust them to do it.....
    i had all this stuff when i was a child i was never introduced to healthy foods and i have been obese my whole life, i feel like maybe if i had better training at home as far as what to eat and how much to eat i would not have been so big when i was a child and may not be struggling now at 39 and 400 pounds , not that im blaming anyone now that im an adult but i feel like if i was taught to make better choices as a kid i would make better choices now - 5/11/2012   2:53:56 PM
  • BEBE051
    40
    I am reading some of these comments and I am alarmed at some of the responses.Our schools should set an example as well as an example of healthy eating at home. We of all people should know that by taking the junk food out of our faces and our children's faces they won't be tempted...hey put a cheese cake or any kind of dessert in front of me or if I bring it into my home and I know its there and I can see it on a daily bases guess what I am going induldge in??? Lets get our schools and our homes on a healthy food kick. Place a basket of beautiful colored fruit on our tables and trays of gorgeous green vegies in front of our childern. We have to wake up and look at the obesity rate of children in America its getting worse. I know I see in our schools here. Come on people lets help our children make wise choices at school and at home we as parents need to step up to the plate, and stop blaming other people for the junk eating, energy drinking generation that our nation has become its killing our children. God Bless You as you train your children to eat healthy and live longer more productive lives. - 5/11/2012   11:29:49 AM
  • 39
    How will kids learn moderation if they're forced into extremes? - 5/11/2012   10:31:28 AM
  • PAYDAY10
    38
    NO - Our children need to be trained by example to be responsible for what they do. To learn they are responsible for their own actions and face the consequences of those actions. Whether it is in food choices or life's choices. We have become an out-of-control, self-indulgent society. Government should not control our decisions! Children should be taught with love and by example. Parents should be the ones to lead their children to make good choices and be respectful of themselves and others! Good, responsible parents should step up and take care of the needs to keep the family healthy. Many parents try to be friends instead of leaders. It is not up to the teacher, schools, government to "CONTROL" our children or our families. It is imparative for us to be responsible parents that are concerned enough to guide family decisions. Not set on the side-lines to be an out-of-control, self-indulgent society. - 5/11/2012   9:50:26 AM
  • 37
    Food for thought... - 5/11/2012   9:30:50 AM
  • 36
    I voted "No" on the ban, because first you have to define "junk food." I know what I think it is, but someone else might not agree - remember that pizza is a vegetable, according to Congress! And there are fund-raisers in schools that often involve home-baked goods, what are they and how will they be treated? Then I read about a Chicago school that banned pack lunches out of concern for nutrition - kind of nervy of them, wouldn't you say? My daughter quit eating the school lunches one year because they were so awful, and brown-bagged sandwiches (which I hated). Rather than "ban" something, I'd like to see Oklahoma City schools just offer better food to begin with!!! - 5/11/2012   9:29:44 AM
  • 35
    Sounds good in practice, but not in reality. I went to school, right across from us was a grocery store. A few minutes of walking, depending which way you went, how much time you had for lunch and how far you're willing to walk, is different fast food joints and a shopping mall. The k-9 were not allowed to lesve the school yard, but us high schoolers were. So if you banned juck food from high school, we'd leave and get it from somewhere else. - 5/11/2012   9:12:46 AM
  • 34
    I remember reading about a study done on the appeal of "junk" food vs. healthy food for children. When children who were never allowed any "junk" food were sent into a room for a snack, they always gravitated toward the junk. When children who were exposed to all foods outside the study and sent into the same room, they gravitated toward the healthy snacks. "Forbidden" foods always draw the most attention.

    On the other hand, why do schools have vending machines with anything other than drinks in them? I went to two different high schools while growing up - one had no vending machines at all and the other only had soda machines.

    Another thought - my sister and I ate the same school lunches every day for years. She was overweight and I was almost nearly underweight. There are LOTS of factors involved in which children become obese and which don't. - 5/11/2012   8:55:42 AM
  • 33
    Banning anything makes it even more appealing. Teach the kids to make smart choices and to eat these types of food in moderation and they will learn a LIFE SKILL. Banning the items will just start a "black market" at schools where kids will be smuggling things in. Not a LIFE SKILL I'd like any child to learn. - 5/11/2012   8:04:25 AM
  • 32
    Keep government out! - 5/11/2012   7:53:45 AM
  • CHICA_BORICUA
    31
    like banning junk food in school will make any difference. You don't eat it at school but got home and stuff yourself with the food you crave. Any difference, absolutely no. - 5/11/2012   7:43:03 AM
  • 30
    My school lunch situation was very different and I'm quite happy about that today as I would probably have had a lot more weight and health problems if it was like in the US. From the age of 7 when I started school to the age of 13 the school provided lunch containing a few different bowls of salad and then the main food that varied every day. Pizza and burgers were only served a 3-4 times a year. Only milk or water was available to drink and the only choice of bread was rye bread.

    From the age of 14-16 the school lunch was pretty much the same but with an extended salad bar. You had the choice to buy sweets from the after school club which made me gain quite a bit of weight the first year but that was later removed so you would have to walk to the shop to get sweets.

    Lastly from the age of 17-19 the school lunch was yet again similar but with an even more extended salad bar and the choice or sour milk with muesli.
    Yes people could go to town and eat a burger if there was time or buy sweets at the school cafeteria afterwards but most people that I knew had the school lunch as it was free. - 5/11/2012   5:56:06 AM
  • 29
    People should find a little self disipline. Governments are not there to ban or dictate what you can eat etc, why on earth would you even consider giving them a say? Back in my day (many moons ago!!) beside the fact that we just didn't have the money to buy rubbish, we were told we couldn't have it and that was that. No whinging no grizzling. - 5/11/2012   5:54:51 AM
  • 28
    I tend to agree with Blue42down. I think we should be very careful about letting the government decide what we should and shouldn't have is an unnecessary intrusion. Having said that, I believe that schools should have the ability and the funding to not only set up a healthy food program but an educational program for the kids and their families. An entire generation has grown up without what I believe is a proper education in healthy living, and this needs to change. Unfortunately many of today's parents were the kids who grew up with a "whatever goes" attitude in society, and change will be difficult. I just don't like the thought of such change being mandated.

    My wish is that the producers and manufacturers of healthy food, both in retail and wholesale would take their eyes of the almighty dollar and work to lower their costs so eating well wouldn't be so expensive. Pipe dreams I know, but great things have started with dreams!
    - 5/11/2012   12:01:51 AM
  • 27
    They just need to get rid of the "snack line" where you can literally buy any type of little debbie cakes, cookies, chips, hershey's milkshakes, yoohoo's, nachos w/ cheese, giant soft pretzels, ice cream bars, and many many more junk food snacks. I remember one of my friends (a very skinny guy), would buy an entire box of zebra cakes at lunch b/c his parents gave him lots of money and he would prove a point that he could never gain weight. I wasn't so lucky and it was very hard not to pay 50 cents for yummy junk food. I wish that the snack line never had existed. - 5/10/2012   9:59:57 PM
  • ABLU20
    26
    It's common sense that kids (actually, EVERYONE!) needs too eat better. What schools provide should not be junk. What annoys me is that as a nation we have abdicated personal responsibility as individuals, families, and communities and expect schools and lawmakers to enforce upon us what we should do (not that we don't resent it when it's a child of our own). Yes, we are all busy. Money’s tight. Kids are kids and want everything. Now.
    WE are the caretakers, parents, teachers, and community that raise our children. We can say no or even an occasional say yes to fast food and bake sale treats. That a law banning toys from kids meals is on the books but that ALL school kids aren’t provided 2 healthy meals a day aggravates me. That we let physical activity be removed from schools and fail to upkeep and maintain the safety of the areas children play exasperates me. When there is such outcry over obesity and its long term risks and costs, why are we not “nipping it in the bud” by feeding school children properly and exercising their bodies and brains because it's simply the right thing not the legally mandated thing to do?
    - 5/10/2012   6:41:57 PM
  • 25
    No, it is not eating the junk food at school that causes the problem. They dont have that much time to eat at school. It is what the kids are taught at home. Banning something just makes them want it. The children should be taught moderation at a very early age. The should grow up knowing how to do things in moderation. Allowing a little "junk" food but taught the goodness of eating fruits and nuts for satisfaction. - 5/10/2012   6:03:36 PM
  • 24
    Yes. And food stamps should not be used to buy junk food and soda either. - 5/10/2012   4:09:08 PM
  • 23
    My general answer is no. Banning is a knee-jerk response and just creates lists of "you're not allowed to have". It also rubs me very badly in the wrong way because it is one group of people deciding what EVERY persons' options are. Why should MY kids have to eat what Picky-Health-Food-Fanatic considers acceptable for his/her kids?

    1) If someone is a concerned parent, there is a very easy option. Pack the kid's lunches at home from the foods and ingredients the parent approves. No more worries about what those kids are eating at lunch.

    2) Be VERY wary of banning / removing junk food and replacing it with typical "healthy" school lunches. Making bad food = delicious stuff adults take away and good food = yucky stuff adults make you eat does NOT encourage healthy eating habits. It encourages those with lunch money to skip lunch and go to the convenience store on the way home. - 5/10/2012   2:56:18 PM
  • 22
    I agree that the responsibility for making sure children have education and access to healthy food lies primarily with parents. I also believe that a community needs to work together to help our future generations to become the best and healthiest people they can be. I'm a single mother whose time and attention must be divided. I send my son to school with a homemade healthy lunch, but I appreciate knowing that if I need to have him buy a lunch at school, the food will be healthy.

    I also think we need to choose our battles, and the battle to provide nutritious food to our children (and our neighbor's children if their parents can't or won't) is one worth fighting. - 5/10/2012   2:12:02 PM
  • 21
    If you care at all for all children you wood care you want them to live long and be healthy.Be smarter .Learn more .Some one has to save this self centered generation.We have to look after the coming generations not our self's. - 5/10/2012   2:06:08 PM
  • 20
    I don't have children in school, but soon my grandchildren will be there, and feel they need to serve healthy food to the children. I do agree, that parents need to control what they are eating the rest of the time they're NOT in school. So many don't encourage their children to play games, ride bikes, hike, etc.
    My beef, which may not seem related to obese children, is a huge concern of myself and my two sisters that our mother is in a nursing home. Every day, twice a day at snack time, they come around with the cart-what's on it? chips, cookies, soda...very little health in that, I'd say! But they are always "allowed" to have fruit, but it's not offered! it's out in the dining room, and they can have it if they ask for it specifically, at any time of any day. Problem is, my mother had a stroke which left her unable to verbalize, and sometimes her skills don't let her think of things if it's "out of sight, out of mind". So what do we do then? She becomes heavier and heavier each passing year, and with a broken hip at one point, she now has no mobility and continues to get heavier, already exceeding 300 lbs I'm sure. It makes me sad that our children and elderly are forced to live these kinds of lives. It's not THEIR choice! - 5/10/2012   1:44:09 PM
  • KENDIC1
    19
    I agree with Jibbie49 as so much focus is put on what schools are feeding our children without really addressing the fact that parents need to be the ones that are providing good, healthy meals for their children! Honestly it is NOT the schools fault if a child is obese...what are the children eating when they are not at school and what are they doing with their free time? We each need to be responsible and work to make changes in our own families lives to have the greatest impact at fighting the challenges of obesity. - 5/10/2012   1:35:47 PM
  • 18
    Yes, I do think vending machines that sell junk food and high-calorie, nutrition-empty school lunches should be banned from schools. I was in high school when they started putting vending machines for pop in school as a fund raiser. I thought it was crazy then, and now that we can see the results, it seems even crazier.

    It is possible to put more nutritious items in the machines if schools still want them. This is probably even a good idea because it could help kids maintain a better blood sugar. Cafeterias should definitely be serving nutritious meals. That's part of educating our children. Introducing units on nutrition into the class room curriculum at early ages is also an important part of this education process--as is having posters that promote good nutrition in the lunch rooms or hallways at school. (Probably widening this to more general good health practices). - 5/10/2012   1:19:06 PM
  • 17
    The problem is processed foods are readily available at low cost, but the schools need to provide those opportunities for children to learn about and experience healthy choices. This includes, food, academics, and socially. - 5/10/2012   1:04:02 PM

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