New bill aims to improve nutrition in schools
“The current standards have improved how children eat, they have healthier foods in schools, their overall diet quality goes up.”
TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KMVT/KSVT) — According to WebMD obesity rates jumped in children during the COVID-19 pandemic and experts worry extra weight could be an ongoing problem for these children.
One study looked at a large pediatric primary care network and found obesity increased from thirteen-point seven percent to fifteen-point four percent in the first months of the COVID shutdown.
To help combat this the American Heart Association is urging Congress to pass the Child Nutrition Reauthorization bill. This bill would ensure the strengthening of evidence-based school nutrition standards, implementing universal school meals, and ensure nutrition security.
“The current standards have improved how children eat, they have healthier foods in schools, their overall diet quality goes up,” said Dr. Cheryl A.M. Anderson, Professor and Interim Chair in the Department of Family and Public Health at UCSD and Immediate Past Chair of the American Heart Association’s Nutrition Committee. “And pre-pandemic the National School Lunch Program had nutrition standards being met in 99 percent of the schools that participated. So, this could be really impactful legislation.”
The bill would also take steps to ensure children are fed by removing any stigmas around free lunches and financial burdens for families. For more information about the bill visit the American Heart Association’s website.
Copyright 2021 KMVT/KSVT. All rights reserved.