Schools Embrace National Nutrition Month Spirit Year-Round

Schools Embrace National Nutrition Month Spirit Year-Round

National Nutrition Month celebrates healthy eating and encourages children and adults to enjoy tasty, nutritious foods. Thanks to the creative work of school nutrition professionals and the high bar set by school nutrition standards, millions of students across the country are offered healthy and delicious meals and snacks every day.

The resources below show how the dietary recommendations at the heart of National Nutrition Month have translated to school lunch trays, and how parents and other family members can encourage children to make healthy choices in the cafeteria.

Healthy School Lunch
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5 Ways School Lunches Meet Nutrition Month Goals

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Every March we celebrate National Nutrition Month, which encourages children and adults alike to eat  healthy. In general, that means filling their plates with lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains and limiting their intake of salt, sugar, and saturated fat.

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healthy school lunch
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Healthy School Lunches Improve Kids’ Habits

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Researchers from the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity weighed and photographed lunches served to children at 12 Connecticut schools in spring 2012, 2013, and 2014. Compared with 2012, children ate nearly 13 percentage points more of their entrees and 18 percentage points more of their vegetables by the last year of the study. (See Figure 1.) Food waste declined as a result.

Healthy School Food
Healthy School Food
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How to Support Healthier School Food for Your Kids

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More than 30 million American children eat school lunches each day. Parents can feel good about this fact because these meals are healthier than ever, which means that kids get the good nutrition they need to learn and do their best in school.

Bowl of Applies
Bowl of Applies
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Nutrition Education Is a Core Component of School’s Curriculum

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Eunice C. Williams is the principal of Brockman Elementary School in Columbia, South Carolina, which received national recognition from the Alliance for a Healthier Generation in 2015 for nutrition and physical activity improvements. The Kids’ Safe and Healthful Foods Project spoke with Williams about her school’s efforts to support healthy eating and active lives.

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KSHF_CookingUpChange_er_OWN_11_20973
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Promote Good Health While Raising Money for Schools

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Research shows that healthy kids do better in school. That’s why there are nutrition standards for food and drinks sold in schools. But a gap in the rules is letting some states make choices that threaten children’s health.

Additional Resources

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Agenda for America

A collection of resources to help federal, state, and local decision-makers set an achievable agenda for all Americans

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Data-driven policymaking is not just a tool for finding new solutions for emerging challenges, it makes government more effective and better able to serve the public interest. In the coming months, President Joe Biden and the 117th Congress will tackle a number of environmental, health, public safety, and fiscal and economic issues—nearly all of them complicated by the COVID-19 pandemic. To help solve specific, systemic problems in a nonpartisan fashion, Pew has compiled a series of briefings and recommendations based on our research, technical assistance, and advocacy work across America.

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Lightbulbs

States of Innovation

Data-driven state policy innovations across America

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Data-driven policymaking is not just a tool for finding new solutions for difficult challenges. When states serve their traditional role as laboratories of innovation, they increase the American people’s confidence that the government they choose—no matter the size—can be effective, responsive, and in the public interest.

School Lunches Are Getting Healthier—The Facts
School Lunches Are Getting Healthier — The Facts
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Americans' Views on School Food and Child Nutrition

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Our public opinion research shows that American parents and most  voters support strong nutrition standards for school meals and snacks.

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