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TODAY'S QUESTION: Do you think the newly proposed USDA guidelines for lunches are a good idea?

Monday, January 17, 2011 | 12:01 a.m. CST; updated 4:59 p.m. CST, Monday, January 17, 2011

COLUMBIA — The USDA’s newly proposed guidelines could affect school lunches for 32 million children.

According to a report from The Associated Press, government-subsidized school cafeterias could have new standards for lunches. Some of the new USDA guidelines would make schools decrease sodium use, increase whole grains and serve lowfat milk.

For the first time, the law would extend nutrition standards to other foods sold in schools as well. This includes a la carte foods on the lunch line and snacks in vending machines.

About a third of children ages 6 to 19 are overweight or obese, according to the USDA.

Tom Vilsack, U.S. secretary of agriculture, said something must be done about obesity in America or else it will “eat us alive in terms of health care costs.”

However, some school groups have criticized efforts to make meals healthier. Critics say it would be hard for already-struggling schools to pay for these new health requirements.

Do you think the newly proposed USDA guidelines for school lunches are a good idea?


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Comments

Amanda Anderson January 17, 2011 | 8:31 a.m.

I think that it is terrific that CPS will have to adhere to a lunch that is more strict on calories and healthy food options. I get tired of sending lunch with my daughter every day because I choose for her to not eat 700 calorie meals with two starches. When I joined her for lunch one day they served rice and beans to all of the children at the end of the lunch period. That made no sense! I like that now all schools and parents can work towards the same goals of having our children eat healthy.

(Report Comment)
Jimmy Bearfield January 17, 2011 | 11:39 a.m.

Why can't kids just brown bag it? I always did. Parents who routinely don't send lunch with their kids should get a visit from social services.

Schools need to stop trying to do things that parents should.

(Report Comment)
Paul Allaire January 17, 2011 | 11:52 a.m.

Great idea. Let the school serve the worst possible lunch as many people as will eat it.

(Report Comment)
amy saanser January 17, 2011 | 12:41 p.m.

All Weight gain(diabetes type 2 also) in the last 40 years is caused by FDA approved food chemicals.

The food today is NOT THE SAME..it is filled with Steroids in the beef..Hormones in the milk...growth hormones in the chickens

This is why people cannot lose weight..the Government will never admit it..and the drug makers get rich off it

A filmmaker has been reversing Diabetes and Obesity without medications in now 10 countries and the drug makers do not promote this see here http://spirithappy.wordpress.com

or just google SPIRIT HAPPY DIET

(Report Comment)
Mark Foecking January 17, 2011 | 3:30 p.m.

Amanda Anderson wrote:

"When I joined her for lunch one day they served rice and beans to all of the children at the end of the lunch period."

What's wrong with rice and beans? Good protein and carbs in both - kids need a lot of both when they're active and growing.

"amy sannser" wrote:

"All Weight gain(diabetes type 2 also) in the last 40 years is caused by FDA approved food chemicals."

That's only "true" if you're selling something. We're a bunch of lardasses because we eat too much and exercise too little. For 50+ years we've had supermarkets brimming with ever kind of food we'd ever want, and automobiles to take us there (and everywhere else). Humans can literally go through a day and not expend a calorie other than what it takes them to go to the bathroom.

We have to safest and most wholesome food in the history of the human race, and it's no wonder it's starting to pile up around our waists. A little restraint with the fork, and a bit of walking and biking, would do a lot of good things (like, get rid of it) to Type II diabetes.

DK

(Report Comment)
Ricky Gurley January 17, 2011 | 3:37 p.m.

Mark,

I am not asking this for the sake of this thread really, just curious more than anything else.

But isn't it true that our bodies are constantly burning off calories, even when we sleep?

Seems like I read that somewhere.

Rick.

(Report Comment)
Jimmy Bearfield January 17, 2011 | 4:07 p.m.

@Rick: Yes, the simply act of existing burns calories. Thinking, breathing, snoring, farting, etc. all takes energy.

(Report Comment)
Mark Foecking January 17, 2011 | 4:16 p.m.

Rick Gurley wrote:

"But isn't it true that our bodies are constantly burning off calories, even when we sleep?"

Yes. They call that the Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). It's usually between 1000 and 2000 calories/day.

I was talking more about exercise calories - that in our parents time (or in Europe) they might have walked to the store, burning 100 calories, while we crank up the car, save 15 minutes, and keep those 100 calories. Since a pound of fat is 3500 calories, you can see where the pounds can pile up over time.

DK

(Report Comment)
Michael Williams January 18, 2011 | 3:14 p.m.

Mark and exercise calories:

Exactly right. Weight gain/loss is a simple exercise (pun intended) in addition/subtraction.

If your basal metabolism rate is 2000 (the caloric expenditure you have just for "existing"), and you drink even 1 extra cup of 2% milk (ca. 100 calories) each day for 365 days (over and above your 2000 normal caloric intake), then you will gain 365 x 100 = 36500 extra calories = 10 more pounds in that year!!!!!!!!!!

And THAT'S just one extra cup of milk each day!!!!!!!

Eat 250 more calories each day for a year (a cup of milk and a slice and a half of american cheese), and you gain 25 pounds in that year.

ORRRRRRRR, you could exercise 4 times a week for 30-45 minutes each time and lose those 25 pounds in a year.

And, even better, you automatically increase your BMR by exercising so that while it once was 2000, now it's 2500/day. Way cool! You get to exercise AND eat more.....just to stay the same!!!!!!!!!

(Report Comment)
Paul Allaire January 18, 2011 | 3:32 p.m.

Jimmy Bearfield says...

"@Rick: Yes, the simply act of existing burns calories. Thinking, breathing, snoring, farting, etc. all takes energy."

Just think what will happen the next time you have a brain fart.

(Report Comment)

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