Do you agree with limiting the calories in a school lunch by AGE?
For the first time, school lunches must have age-aligned calorie maximums, capping the amount of calories high school students eat to around 850 calories. The new restrictions all come from the updated Dietary Guidelines for Americans from the U.S. Department of Agriculture and are funded by the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 ? legislation promoted by Michelle Obama.
While the changes may seem like a step in a healthier direction, not all students are finding them so tasty. On Monday, about 70 percent of the 830 students at Mukwonago High School in Wisconsin who typically buy their lunch boycotted the school?s cafeteria, the Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel reported. The high schoolers were joined by middle schoolers in the district, reducing the number of lunches sold by half.
According to the Journal Sentinel, the Mukwonago School District is not alone, as many other schools nationwide are also reporting students frustrated with the new rules.
One such student from Mukwonago High, Nick Blohm, said the healthier food is not so much the problem as it is portion size. A 6-foot-3-inch, 210-pound linebacker, Blohm said he burns around 3,000 calories during three hours of football practice and weight training. He?s also the class president, and he?s taking various Advanced Placement classes. But the new caps, he said, are making it harder to perform both physically and academically.
"A lot of us are starting to get hungry even before the practice begins," Blohm told the Journal Sentinel. "Our metabolisms are all sped up."
Read more: High school students boycott school cafeteria over new lunch restrictions | Fox News
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Yeah, I don't think calorie caps are the way to go. For someone like me, 850 calories would be plenty for lunch (I try to keep mine around 500-600 when I'm not pregnant), but as they pointed out in the article, there are kids that are heavily active (or in a growth spurt, or just have a really high metabolism) who definitely need more than the standard 2000 for an adult. I think they should offer healthy nutrient-rich foods, but not restrict the amounts.
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I am not a fan of calorie restriction. Calorie intake is not the same for everyone as it is clearly pointed out.
What we need to do is put money back into school lunches. Focus on homemade lunches made in the cafeteria with food kids will eat. Side salads and water as part of the meal. Fresh fruits as well. and not the carted in crap that is typical for school lunches (that's what we had...some company brought in the food and was so gross so most kids would eat chips and french fries for lunch). I think allowing kids to leave school to buy fast food is also an idea that needs to stop. I was floored by the amount of schools that allow this!
850 calories is totally reasonable for MOST high school students. If it isn't, then they are more than welcome to supplement their meal with their own foods. There is not a restriction on bringing in a sandwich to augment your meal, or a restriction on eating before, during, after practice.
Our kids are FAT. Our nation is FAT. Heck, many of our football players are fat. We have to start somewhere and it is hard for me to feel sympathetic about a few high school athletes who need to eat more than 850 calories/meal (which really is a lot. Most eat a 2000 calorie diet, 850 calories at each meal would put you at 2500 calories for the day....and likely have you packing on pounds.)
When I was a HS athlete, we would snack before practice and after practice. Yes, we consumed a lot of calories (swimming will do that)-- but it wasn't the school's or government's responsibility to provide all of those calories. School lunches are a safety net for hungry kids, but they shouldn't be expected to meet the high end of calorie needs IMO.
DD 8.03, DD 6.05, DS 3.07, DD 5.09, and DS arrived 6.17.12
I do not believe calorie caps are the way to go, every child has very different needs. I hope that we can do a better job of teaching our children what their individual needs are, then help them meet those needs.
The other thought that crosses my mind are the kids that are only getting food at school.
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