Ms. Ann Marie Perone-Founder of Body Rocks

Ms. Ann Marie Perone-Founder of Body Rocks
Ms. Perone & her daughter Emilee
My photo
The Purpose of the BODY ROCKS Program is to promote positive body image and eating disorders awareness in our schools and communities. BODY ROCKS is a peer education group devoted to promoting positive body image and eating disorders awareness in our schools and community.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Obesity and our School Nutrition

Requirements for Local School Wellness Policies passed by Congress in 2004 requires that every school district who participates in the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) school meal program MUST have established a local wellness policy by the start of the 2006–2007 school year. The goal of this addendum is to increase healthy food options and physical activity opportunities at each of the participating schools to help combat rising obesity levels in today’s youth. 
Under the new act, each school district in the program is required, at a minimum, to take the following steps to design and implement activities that meet the local community’s needs:
• Set goals for nutrition education, physical activity and other school activities designed to promote student wellness.
• Create nutrition guidelines for all foods and beverages available during the school day outside of the federal meal program.
• Provide assurance that guidelines for reimbursable school meals are not less restrictive than current USDA regulations.
• Establish a way to measure wellness policy implementation, including designating one or more responsible persons at each school.
• Encourage the involvement of key stakeholders, including parents, students and the public.
 Obesity is growing...
Nevada was named the 31st most obese state in the country, according to the seventh annual F as in Fat: How Obesity Threatens America's Future 2010, Trust for America's Health (TFAH) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF).

Nevada's adult obesity rate is 25.6 percent, and, in Nevada men are more obese than women at 27.7 percent. Now more than two-thirds of states (38) have adult obesity rates above 25 percent.
The report highlights troubling racial and ethnic disparities in obesity rates. For instance, adult obesity rates for Blacks and Latinos were higher than for Whites in at least 40 states and the District of Columbia. In Nevada, the adult obesity rate was 25.8 percent among Blacks and 28.4 percent among Latinos, compared with 24.8 percent among Whites. Obesity rates among youths ages 10-17 from the 2007 National Survey of Children's Health (NSCH) also were included in the 2009 F as in Fat report; 15.2 percent of children were obese in the state, with the state ranking 23rd out of the 50 states and D.C. for childhood obesity.
Data collection for the next NSCH will begin in 2011.   

 In Nevada, we have changes our school lunches by the vending machine options. Many school student stores still carry JUNK like Otis Spunkemeyer Cookies, Cor Nuts, Soda, Snickers Marathon Bar and more. We can't sell candy as fundraisers anymore but we can sell cookie dough? Is this really helping? 

Currently, more than 12 million children and adolescents in the United States are considered obese.

F as in Fat: How Obesity Threatens America's Future 2010 by Trust for America's Health reports the following information for Nevada:

  • Nevada has set nutritional standards for school lunches, breakfasts, and snacks that are stricter than current United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) requirements. Twenty states and D.C. have set such standards. Five years ago, only four states had legislation requiring stricter standards
  • Nevada has nutritional standards for competitive foods sold in schools on รก la carte lines, in vending machines, in school stores, or through school bake sales. Twenty-eight states and D.C. have nutritional standards for competitive foods. Five years ago, only six states had such standards.
  • Nevada has passed requirements for body mass index (BMI) screenings of children and adolescents or legislation requiring other forms of weight-related assessments in schools. Twenty states have passed such requirements for BMI screenings. Five years ago, only four states had passed screening requirements.
  • Nevada has not passed Complete Streets legislation, which aims to ensure that all users -- pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists and transit riders of all ages and abilities -- have safe access to a community's streets. Thirteen states have passed Complete Streets legislation.
Imagine your child's school lunch healthy. What can we do to help make the changes?

No more soggy tater tots and rubbery hot dogs.  Imagine a salad bar? Vegetarian options? Local produce? . Many advocates of healthier school food are excited to see that districts must now create at least some kind of nutrition guidelines for all food available at school, although the specifics of those guidelines are left to the individual districts to decide. 

With childhood obesity and diabetes on the rise, it's clear our kids need healthier eating habits. Establishing these behaviors early in life can lead to healthier eating as an adult. Our school lunches are too high in cholesterol and saturated fat, and too low in dietary fiber, whole grains and vegetables.

So who is really trying to make a difference? is a great website that will assist you in changing your school lunch program.Take a look at this website and the campaign you can start.

Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution filled a bus with sugar to show how much of it LAUSD kids get at school just from flavored milk IN JUST 1 WEEK. I WANT REAL MILK — too much sugar is bad for kids' health, but schools can switch sugary flavored milk for plain, wholesome milk — a real simple change for better health.

TLC 10 rates the Healthiest School Lunch Plans. The number 1 school in the United States is The Ross School, a private school located in the Hamptons, New York. Yes, PRIVATE school. They works with a dieticiankimchi and grilled fish. Vegetarian dishes are available each day, as well as fresh gourmet salads. Students even work with local farmers, learning how to plant seeds, harvest and compost. Most importantly, knowing how to cook is a requirement for graduation. WOW!!!

ealthy meals and snacks, daily physical activity, and nutrition education. Healthy meals and snacks provide nutrition for growing bodies while modeling healthy eating behavior and attitudes. Increased physical activity reduces health risks and helps weight management. Nutrition education helps young children develop an awareness of good nutrition and healthy eating habits for a lifetime.

Children can be encouraged to adopt healthy eating behaviors and be physically active when parents:

* Focus on good health, not a certain weight goal. Teach and model healthy and positive attitudes toward food and physical activity without emphasizing body weight.
* Focus on the family. Do not set overweight children apart. Involve the whole family and work to gradually change the family's physical activity and eating habits.
* Establish daily meal and snack times, and eating together as frequently as possible. Make a wide variety of healthful foods available based on the Food Guide Pyramid for Young Children. Determine what food is offered and when, and let the child decide whether and how much to eat.
* Plan sensible portions. Use the Food Guide Pyramid for Young Children as a guide.

Help change the future of our children's eating habits, and school food. A great place to start is using the packets from

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