A N.Y. District Changes Menus for Healthier Lunches

ANGELA PASCOPELLA's picture
Monday, August 27, 2012

School meals are about to get much healthier, and at some local school districts, the change will be significant.

This fall, school districts have to meet strict new nutritional standards for school meals, a requirement under the federal Healthy, Hungry-Free Kids Act of 2010. The law aims to provide children with well-balanced meals and teach them about healthy eating. It’s also designed to curb childhood obesity.

Meals must now contain more whole grains, and less sodium and saturated fat. Portion sizes will be reduced, and calorie limits will be in place. But perhaps the biggest change will be the increase in the variety of fruits and vegetables. There will be more of them, and students will be required to take at least one serving of fruits or vegetables with their meals. “The children will have to take either a vegetable or fruit on their tray. Previously, it was an option,” said Jane Pepin, director of nutrition services at Hudson Falls.

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