Submitted to: Journal Of The American Dietetic Association
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/1/2002
Publication Date: 9/1/2002
Citation: Kramer-Atwood, J.L., Dwyer, J., Hoelscher, D.M., Nicklas, T., Johnson, R.K., Schulz, G.K. 2002. Fostering healthy food consumption in schools: focusing on the challenges of competitive foods. Journal Of The American Dietetic Association. 102:(9):1228-1233. Interpretive Summary: An interpretive summary is not required.
Technical Abstract: School-based intervention programs may help to instill healthy food consumption practices that reduce diet-related risks of chronic diseases later in life. However, the current school environment presents many nutritional challenges. School lunch and breakfast programs must meet specific standards for certain nutrients; however, food sold in addition to the reimbursable school meals do not have to meet such criteria. Therefore, competitive foods sold in a la carte sections of the cafeteria, school stores, and vending machines that may be high in calories, total fat, saturated fat, added sugars, cholesterol, and/or sodium present a major challenge. Included in this paper are some suggestions to foster healthy food consumption practices in school settings that are in line with current guidelines. Today, most nutritional problems involve overweight, sedentary lifestyles, high intakes of energy (relative to energy expenditure), dietary fat, saturated fat, added sugars, and sodium. Low intakes of calcium, fiber, fruit, vegetables, and whole grains contribute further to the problem. Because many high-calorie foods that are low in vitamins, minerals, and fiber are included in the eating patterns of many U.S. children, moderation in energy intakes, added sugars, saturated fats, and total fats is warranted.