Sunday, September 22, 2013

School Daze-If The Schools Can Do It, You Can Do It

May 2011-Look how far we've come.  This was written 2 years ago just as the new school lunch meal pattern and nutrition regulations were about to be released from USDA. 

http://articles.dailypress.com/2011-05-06/health/dp-fea-school-lunches-20110506_1_school-lunch-chicken-parmesan-sandwich-school-menus

A few lessons learned:
  • Kids didn't even notice the switch from 1% to skim flavored milk - try this at home!
  • Prices did go up, but school lunch is still a deal at around $2.50 for an entree, 2 veggies, a fruit and a milk.
  • Each year, we add more whole grains.  First it was cereal, rolls and sandwich bread, then it was pasta, breadsticks and wraps, now it is brown rice, next year it will be buns.  Baby steps - try this at home!
  • We keep working on the sodium content of our meals - testing new products from manufacturers, making recipe substitutions.  Try this at home - if you can use just ONE low sodium ingredient in your favorite recipe, you come out ahead.
  • We plan and then analyze our menus for nutrition targets using a weekly average.  Try this at home! It is how you eat over the course of the week that matters.  Some meals will be better than others, some days will be better than others.  Aim for balance over the week.
Remember my mantra:  balance, variety and moderation.

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