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Whoa, Momma!

Sharon Kennedy Wynne, Tracey Henry and Suzannah DiMarzio

What will it take to get healthy lunches in school?

lunch.jpgReading this story by our colleague Tom Marshall on a taste test by kids of some new lunch room recipes makes me wonder: What will it take to wean kids off junk food?

The kids were offered a Hot Pocket-style breakfast offering that they loved. The story says it's healthy but I'm skeptical. The fish tacos? Not so much. The teryaki? Teri-yukky.

I haven't had a chance to catch Jamie Oliver's show about revolutionizing dinner and school lunch offerings but my take is we are very resistant to giving up the processed and deep fried foods we love so much. The other problem is fresh food is more expensive that processed junk. How deeply do we care about this issue?

Remarkably, the school lunch program came about because of the U.S. Army. During World War II, military leaders found that many recruits were rejected because of stunted growth and inadequate nutrition. After the war, military leaders pushed Congress to establish the national school lunch program so children would grow up healthier.

Just last year, the military made the opposite plea. Military leaders urged Congress last April to eliminate junk food and high-calorie beverages from schools, and to put more money into the school lunch program and develop new strategies that help children develop healthier habits. They said school lunches are a national security threat.

--Sharon Kennedy Wynne

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[Last modified: Wednesday, July 6, 2011 12:57pm]


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