Improving school nutrition can be done, and the key, finds a new study from Kaiser Permanente Southern California, is going beyond just changing what's served in the cafeteria. To really make an impact on what students are eating, schools need to involve not just administrators, but also teachers and parents.
Researchers looked at 400 students at eight elementary and middle schools whose schools were experimenting with a public-health approach to improving school nutrition. Changes made included swapping food and beverage awards with non-food prizes and eliminating junk from classroom and school celebrations and fund-raisers.
"There was a 30 percent decrease in the amount of unhealthy foods and beverages consumed by students at these schools during the study, compared to a 26 percent increase at other schools," explains HealthDay. What's more, outside lunches brought in by students became healthier at the schools involved in the study.
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