Published Online: January 19, 2016
Published in Print: January 20, 2016, as School Lunches

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School Lunches

"Effect of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act on the Nutritional Quality of Meals Selected by Students and School Lunch Participation Rates"

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Students at an urban school district in Washington state ate healthier lunches after their schools began complying with new federal nutrition standards, and participation in the lunch program remained steady, a new study finds.

Authors of the study, published this month in JAMA Pediatrics, examined 1.7 million lunches at three middle schools and three high schools in the unnamed district between 2011 and 2014.

The authors, from the Center for Public Nutrition at the University of Washington, found school lunches prepared after the standards were implemented had higher levels of six nutrients—calcium, vitamin C, vitamin A, iron, fiber, and protein and fewer calories per gram of food. They did not study whether students actually consumed the foods.

Vol. 35, Issue 18, Page 5

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