Pharos-Tribune

Opinion

October 31, 2012

OUR VIEW: Schools promoting healthy choices

— When the U.S. Department of Agriculture handed down stricter standards for school lunches, many might have feared that kids would resist the change, that they might turn their noses up at the healthier food choices and instead come to school with sugary treats and potato chips.

Sadly, there has been some of that.

In a story this week, the food director at one county school corporation acknowledged that she had seen fewer kids standing in the lunch line.

Our hope is that trend will begin to change with the passage of time. As word spreads that these healthier choices actually taste pretty good, we hope more youngsters will give them a try.

Clearly, the United States has a weight problem. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one-third of U.S. adults are considered obese.

The latest statistics indicate that almost two-thirds of Hoosier adults age 18 and over were overweight, with a body mass index of 25 or greater. Nearly 30 percent were obese.

The problem starts at a young age. Nearly 16 percent of Indiana’s adolescents in grades 9 through 12 were overweight and 12.8 percent were obese. The numbers were even higher for the state’s pre-schoolers ages 2 to 5.

Weight-related health issues include heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer. In 2008, medical costs associated with obesity were estimated at $147 billion; the medical costs for people who are obese were $1,429 higher than the costs for individuals of normal weight.

Most of us need to take a closer look at our diets. We need to develop some healthier habits. We need fewer soft drinks or more juice or milk or even water. We need less grease and more greens.

And what better place to form those habits than in our public schools?

The U.S. Department of Agriculture should be applauded for the steps it has taken to make school lunches healthier, and it’s incumbent upon parents to back up the message nutritionists are trying to send.

Resist the temptation to fill that bag with junk food and encourage your children instead to pick up some of those fruits and vegetables they’ll find in the school lunch line.

Your kids might complain at first, but they’ll thank you in the long run.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • PARKER: It's time to take a joke, America In selecting Stephen Colbert to replace David Letterman as host of the "Late Show," CBS has waged war on America's Heartland -- or so proclaims that Palm Beach font of heartland mirth, Rush Limbaugh. Don't you believe it, Heartlanders. But wait, ther

    April 16, 2014

  • THEIR VIEW: Constitutional convention won't work today There seems to be a growing idea that we need a Constitutional convention. That, of course, is the other way to change the Constitution. Amendments have been used 27 times to make changes, ranging from limiting the president's term of office to the d

    April 16, 2014

  • KITCHELL: Forum about adding answers, subtracting questions A week from tonight, Logansport residents and those outside Logansport who purchase electricity from the Logansport Municipal Utilities will have a chance to find out some things for themselves. A free forum at McHale Performing Arts Center will feat

    April 16, 2014

  • PUBLIC FORUM: The people are losing control of its government The people are losing control of government President Obama and progressive Democrats and Republicans are changing the landscape of our country by bypassing our Constitution and what our forefathers fought and gave their lives for. Their philosophy c

    April 16, 2014

  • THEIR VIEW: Health care fraud can't go unchecked National health care spending tops $2.7 trillion annually. That leaves a lot of room, and temptation, for abuse of a bureaucracy that administers medical services. Medicare and Medicaid scams may cost taxpayers more than $98 billion each year. Health

    April 15, 2014

  • MARCUS: Truth is often unwelcome Jim Feelwright greeted me warmly as I entered the room: “Well, here he is, Mr. Negative.” Since it was a friendly meeting, I borrowed a famous line from the movies: “You can’t handle the truth.” “You,” he said, “just don’t want to see what’s really h

    April 15, 2014

  • VILLAGE IDIOT: Signs of spring finally upon us Today I saw my first crocus popping up after the long winter. It was in a picture a friend posted on Facebook. Suddenly, it seemed everyone was posting pictures of buds on trees, robins on the lawn, green shoots coming up in the garden. It was almost

    April 15, 2014

  • PUBLIC FORUM: Letters for Tuesday, April 15, 2014 Thankful to community for its care, prayers Thank you to Kyle Rans, Harrison-Metzger-Rans, Guardian Angels Hospice, Royal Center first responders and ambulance drivers for the gentle care and comforting words extended to our family. Thank you to the

    April 15, 2014

  • Brian Bosma BOSMA: House Republicans achieve legislative priorities When the General Assembly began its work last November, as Speaker I pledged a session driven by five main issues: increased road funding, enhanced job training, early childhood education, fair business taxation and cutting government red tape. With

    April 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • LYONS: Taking pity on the Plutocrats "Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history. There is a tiny splinter group, of course, that belie

    April 14, 2014

Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide
Poll

Should e-cigarette marketing be regulated like tobacco?

Yes
No
Unsure
     View Results
Featured Ads
AP Video
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.