cafeteria serving usa

Typical lunch in US school cafeteria: Fried “popcorn” chicken, mashed potatoes, peas, fruit cup and a chocolate chip cookie.

 

The fact that the US has an obesity problem among its populace doesn’t come as a surprise any longer, but what we should all find concerning is how this has spiraled  away to school kids as well. One in three American kids are classed as obese, according to the government. Sure, much of this stems from home – what parents serve their kids, how they educate them about nutrition and so on. What we should also keep in mind is that a major role is played by school cafetieres which more or less force feed children certain foods. Bloomberg reports that some  32 million children were included in the  National School Lunch Program in 2013, a federally assisted meal program operating in public and nonprofit private schools, During this time  5.1 billion lunches were served.

A typical school cafeteria serving contains fried food stuff like nuggets, mashed potatoes or peas. Kids’ nutritional uptake and diet could be a lot better, as proven elsewhere by schools all around the world. Sweetgreen, a restaurant the values local and organic produce, recently published on its Tumblr an amazing photo journal detailing what a typical cafeteria serving looks like in countries like South Korea, Brazil or Italy. Of course, these servings were made and arranged by the Sweetgreen staff, but according to them these were based on government standards for school lunch program and real-life photos shared by children via social media.

Most, but not all, all of the servings are believed to be healthier and more nutritious for children since they contain fresher, greener and more nutrient-rich foods. These are essential for both good physical and mental development.

Pork with mixed veggies, black beans and rice, salad, bread and baked plantains.

Pork with mixed veggies, black beans and rice, salad, bread and baked plantains.

Local fish on a bed of arugula, pasta with tomato sauce, caprese salad, baguette and some grapes.

Local fish on a bed of arugula, pasta with tomato sauce, caprese salad, baguette and some grapes.

Pea soup, beet salad, carrot salad, bread and pannakkau (dessert pancake) with fresh berries.

Pea soup, beet salad, carrot salad, bread and pannakkau (dessert pancake) with fresh berries.

Fish soup, tofu over rice, kimchi and fresh veggies.

Fish soup, tofu over rice, kimchi and fresh veggies.

Steak, carrots, green beans, cheese and fresh fruit.

Steak, carrots, green beans, cheese and fresh fruit.

Baked chicken over orzo, stuffed grape leaves, tomato and cucumber salad, fresh oranges, and Greek yogurt with pomegranate seeds.

Baked chicken over orzo, stuffed grape leaves, tomato and cucumber salad, fresh oranges, and Greek yogurt with pomegranate seeds.

Mashed potatoes with sausage, borscht, cabbage and syrniki (a dessert pancake).

Mashed potatoes with sausage, borscht, cabbage and syrniki (a dessert pancake).

Sautéed shrimp over brown rice and vegetables, gazpacho, fresh peppers, bread and an orange.

Sautéed shrimp over brown rice and vegetables, gazpacho, fresh peppers, bread and an orange.

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