By Nolan McCall, Applied Nutrition for Healthy Living, Fall 2012
Obesity is running rampant in the United States, more so than it has ever done so in previous decades. While some of this can certainly be blamed on genetics, as well as diseases such as diabetes, it is clear that the biggest cause is an unhealthy diet. An unhealthy diet that is eaten by all ages, but has the biggest impact on the youth of America. Learning to eat an unhealthy diet from an early age can build lifelong habits of unhealthy eating. Because of this, efforts have been made to adjust nutrition standards in schools across the country.
Improving the nutritional standards in schools is an important step that needs to be taken in order to help assure the health of the future. A new plan, proposed originally by first lady Michelle Obama, to increase the nutrition standards in schools would include a variety of options, as well as provide quite a few benefits. Taking away unhealthy food options, such as vending machines filled with cookies and soda, will leave children who buy food at school with no choice but to purchase healthier food options in the cafeteria. In addition to this, children buying food through the school’s cafeteria’s, and not from vending machines, will give more money to the actual schools, not the vending companies that provide other, less healthy food sources. So no only does raising the standard for nutrition provide health benefits to students, but fiscal benefits to the schools.