Trans fat ban proposed for Colorado schools

Junk food in school cafeterias has been under attack for years. Now Colorado is considering the nation’s toughest ban on unhealthy fats in school foods, a ban that could endanger pizza, French fries and other childhood favorites. Check out this CBS News report. 

With trans fat ban looming, PSD, other districts ahead of curve

school lunchA proposed legislative ban of trans fat in Colorado school cafeterias, vending machines and snacks appears to be little more than a formality for Poudre School District and surrounding schools.

According to Craig Schneider, PSD director of child nutrition, the only food with trans fat currently served in district cafeterias is turkey, which has naturally occurring trans fat. Read more in the Coloradoan.

Study: Junk food at school doesn’t have impact on childhood obesity

One-third of children are too fat, but a new study says it probably has nothing to do with junk food in the schools.

Researchers found that the percentage of children who had access to candy, soda and chips at school jumped dramatically between fifth and eighth grades — but it didn’t translate into more pudge.

In fact, the percentage of students in the survey who were overweight or obese declined between fifth and eighth grades. Read more in the New York Daily News. 

5 ways parents can improve school lunch

Get the latest from Mrs. Q. “Three years of working for Chicago public schools wasn’t enough for me to notice what was happening in the cafeteria; I actually had to eat the food to realize the enormity of the problem. So as “Mrs. Q,” I ate school lunch for a year in 2010, anonymously blogged about it, then revealed my identity with my book, Fed Up with Lunch.” Read more at Babble.

Chelsea Clinton: Schools key to fighting obesity

Championing her father’s cause, Chelsea Clinton on Tuesday touted local school systems as “precious valuable resources” in the fight to curb diabetes and childhood obesity.

Clinton pointed out that the average student will spend 12,000 to 15,000 hours in school before graduating from high school, yet only a fraction get regular physical education and recess like she did when she attended public schools in Arkansas in the 1980s. Read more in this article.

Fuel Up to Play 60 webinar planned

Action for Healthy Kids is pleased to announce that it will be co-hosting a free national webinar with Fuel Up to Play 60.  Titled “Fuel Up to Play 60: Kick it Off and Get Support from Your School,” the webinar will feature two Fuel Up to Play 60 Program Advisors – teachers who will talk about their experiences running the program.  It will be held Thursday, Jan. 26, from 4 to 5 p.m. Eastern time or 1 to 2 p.m. Pacific. Register here.

Fitness resources, courtesy State of Colorado

No doubt, our lifestyles have changed through the years. With ease of technology, Americans aren’t as active as they once were. Just 30 minutes of physical activity a day can have huge benefits to your health. Visit CDC’s website to see how much physical activity you need to reap healthy benefits,

U.S. obesity rates stall, but no decline

After two decades of steady increases, obesity rates in adults and children in the United States have remained largely unchanged during the past 12 years, a finding that suggests national efforts at promoting healthful eating and exercise are having little effect on the overweight. Read more in this New York Times blog. 

Healthy eating may help ADHD kids: U.S. study

Simply eating healthier may improve the behavior of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder if therapy and medication fail, said a study published Monday in the journal Pediatrics.

Researchers, however, said that their review of recent controlled scientific studies had shown conflicting evidence on the impact of supplements and restricted diets — in some cases they were no better than the placebo effect. Read more from Yahoo News.

Recreational play can be far more important than academics

Play is important for the emotional, social, cognitive, and physical development of children. In addition to being critical for general health and a preventative against overweight, play develops life skills for children and communication skills among peers and family members.

But because of over-scheduling, over-supervision, lack of appropriate play environments, and too many entertaining screens many children have less access to play time and play spaces than children in the past. Read more in The Atlantic.

Schools ‘spy’ on fat kids

Big Brother is joining the battle of the bulge.

A group of Long Island students will soon be wearing controversial electronic monitors that allow school officials to track their physical activity around the clock. Check out the New York Post. 

About our First Person series:

First Person is where Chalkbeat features personal essays by educators, students, parents, and others trying to improve public education. Read our submission guidelines here.