Renascence School Education News - private school

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Nestle expanding research on child health and nutrition

Food Business News – Chad Orzel

“The research effort is on at Nestle S.A. The Vevey-based company earlier this week said it will expand its research on child health and nutrition to 10 countries, including the United States, China and Mexico, by the end of 2016. The research consists of two ongoing studies being conducted by Nestle: the Kids Nutrition and Health Study (KNHS) and Feeding Infants and Toddlers Study (FITS). According to Nestle, the studies provide snapshots of eating patterns, nutrient intakes, child lifestyle and behavioral factors, and healthy weight indicators of children up to 12 years of age. “Nestle will rely on FITS and KNHS learnings to continually improve the nutritional profiles of our products that address unmet nutritional needs, as well as communications, programs and services to inform health care providers, parents and caregivers” said Timothy A. Morck, vice-president of scientific and regulatory affairs at Nestle USA.”(more)

Monday, March 30, 2015

Vilsack, Duncan, Burwell: Keep school lunches healthy

USA Today – Tom Vilsack, Arne Duncan and Sylvia Burwell

“Every parent has dreams for their child. We want them to grow up strong and healthy. We tell them to dream big and work hard so that they can be anything they want to be. We want them to take the world by storm. As parents, we lay the foundation for our children’s future success, but we know that we can’t do it alone. We rely on people like pediatricians, other health care providers, teachers and other school professionals to act as our proxies. We entrust them with the task of helping our kids grow up smart, strong and healthy because, as parents, we believe that they will make decisions in our children’s best interests. And that applies to what our children eat when they are away from home, especially at school. The updated school meals standards introduced across the country in 2012 are undoubtedly improving the quality of school meals as well as the health and well-being of our children.”(more)

Kids’ fast food consumption on the decline

Reuters – Kathryn Doyle

“Between 2003 and 2010, the number of U.S. kids eating fast food on any given day went down, and the calories from some types of fast foods have declined as well, according to a new study. “Most prior studies have focused on menu items, but this (one) actually looked at what children are eating,” said coauthor Colin D. Rehm, formerly of the University of Washington in Seattle and now of Tufts University in Medford, Massachusetts. “The take-home message is that changes can be made, whether they are due to consumer preference or due to what the restaurants have done themselves,” Rehm told Reuters Health by phone. “It shows that change is possible.” According to data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys, in 2003, almost 39 percent of U.S. kids ate fast food on a given day, which dropped to less than 33 percent by the 2009-2010 survey. Calorie intake from burger, pizza and chicken fast food restaurants also went down, while those from Mexican foods and sandwiches did not change.”(more)

Parents rarely spot child obesity

BBC – James Gallagher

“Parents hardly ever spot obesity in their children, resulting in damaging consequences for health, doctors warn. In a study of 2,976 families in the UK, only four parents thought their child was very overweight. Medical assessments put the figure at 369. The researchers, writing in the British Journal of General Practice, said obesity had become the new normal in society. Experts said the study showed the “enormity” of the obesity epidemic. Around one in five children in Year 6 is obese and a further 14% are overweight, the National Child Measurement Programme shows. Blind spot The team, from the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and the UCL Institute of Child Health, gave questionnaires to nearly 3,000 families asking if their child was obese, overweight, underweight or a healthy weight.”(more)

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Your Child’s Health: The ways to please a picky eater

Fox News 8 – Maria Scali

“The dinner table doesn’t have to be a battlefield over who’s going to win the ‘veggie fight’ — you or your child. As we find out in today’s Your Child’s Health report, parents should forget the pressure approach and have a little patience and some creativity. Shaun Cummings is like most moms who would like her child to eat healthy, well-balanced meals. But, two-year-old Eve is like many youngsters. “She’s a picky eater. She’ll eat the basic things like corn. She doesn’t eat broccoli. She doesn’t eat peas. Every once in a while she’ll eat string beans,” Cummings said. Janet Kramer, Clinical Dietician with University Hospitals Rainbow Babies and Children’s Hospital says it is best for a child’s overall health to eat a variety of vegetables. Parents should forget the pressure approach and take the family approach. “Whether you’re talking about picky eaters, or getting kids to eat vegetables — the most important thing — is to be a good role model. Set the example, eat the vegetables yourself,” Kramer said.”(more)

Guess What Makes The Cut As A ‘Smart Snack’ In Schools? Hot Cheetos

NPR – Monica Eng

“Flamin’ Hot Cheetos might conjure a lot of descriptors: spicy, crunchy, unnaturally fiery red. But it’s a good bet that “healthy” didn’t exactly spring to mind. Yet it turns out that those fiery Cheetos beloved by school children (some kids even made an epic rap paean to Hot Cheetos a few years ago) actually qualify as a “Smart Snack” under revised federal nutrition guidelines for schools. The Obama administration rolled out the new guidelines last year in a bid to limit the amount of junk food kids eat in school, but nearly half of all U.S. states have formally rejected the standards as too strict. Some legislators think the rules make it too hard for schools to raise money through snack sales at vending machines. But at Chicago’s Whitney Young High School, Flamin’ Hot Cheetos remain among the most popular snacks sold. “They’re good, like, they just taste delicious,” says Cashari Norwood, a junior at the school. “And like, I’m a vegetarian and so sometimes, I just want to eat something that’s good, and I can’t even really get that here.” These aren’t just any Flamin’ Hot Cheetos. They’re a reformulated version with less fat, less salt and more whole grains. But is that really what the scientists at the Institute of Medicine had in mind when they wrote the recommendations that would become the Smart Snack rules? “Well, probably not,” says Virginia Stallings, a professor of pediatrics at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. She chaired the committee that helped make the federal rules.”(more)

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Learning To Move, Moving To Learn: The Benefits Of PE

NPR – Eric Westervelt

“When it comes to kids and exercise, schools need to step up and focus more on quality as well as quantity. And, says Dr. Gregory D. Myer, they need to promote activities that develop motor skills, socialization and fun. Myer is one of the authors of a recent paper and commentary on children and exercise. He’s also director of the Human Performance Lab and director of research at the Division of Sports Medicine at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. Like others, Myer notes that when it’s time to trim the budget, PE, art and music classes are often the first to go. While he’s certainly distressed by those cuts, he and his co-authors also seek to question the “current dogma that is currently focused on the quantitative rather than qualitative aspects of physical activity” programs for youth. Myer helped develop exercise guidelines for youth aimed at reducing sports-related injuries and promoting health. The guidelines call for greater focus on short, interval-like bursts of activity interspersed with rest. It includes core strength building, resistance training, agility and more.”(more)

More pupils have mental health issues, say school staff

BBC – Judith Burns

“More than half of 850 staff surveyed by the Association of Teachers and Lecturers (ATL) agreed more pupils had developed problems. On Monday, the ATL’s annual conference will debate a call for more support for vulnerable pupils in schools. General secretary Dr Mary Bousted blamed “poverty, poor housing, unemployment and financial insecurity”. School staff have had to “plug the gaps in social care as best they can”, said Dr Bousted. Some 861 ATL members responded to the survey earlier this month. ‘Completely overwhelmed’ More than one in six said they believed at least a quarter of students in their school or college were affected by mental health problems. Almost 90% said staff have had to provide more support for these pupils over the past two years, while 43% said they had been finding it harder to access services for pupils with mental illness.”(more)

Friday, March 27, 2015

To Get Kids to Eat Healthier in School, Presentation Matters

Education News – Kristin Decarr

“A new study out of Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health has found that getting kids to eat healthier boils down to taste and presentation. Researchers assigned trained chefs to a number of low-income schools in an effort to focus on the eating habits of 2,600 third and fourth-graders in schools both with and without a chef. They found that children who attended schools with a trained chef on staff ate more fruits and vegetables than those who did not. Success was measured by “plate waste,” or the food children left on their plates after finishing their meals. Schools where children ate more of the food served to them saved money, as the chefs were able to put the food they had to use more effectively…The study is the first to look into the long-term impacts that chefs and “choice architecture” have on school lunches, finding that carefully placing healthy options and having a chef on staff seemed to increase children’s consumption of fruits and vegetables, according to Cohen.”(more)

A 7-day active lifestyle plan for your child

Rappler – Krista Garcia

“Do school-aged children already need a “fitness plan?” Yes! However, it’s not the typical diet or exercise regimen that adults usually sign up for. There is a growing concern about kids being less physically active these days. This is largely due to their increasingly sedentary lifestyles, influenced by living locations and increased use of gadgets. There is also a misconception that “being active” requires sports or vigorous exercise. However, any kind of unstructured play can also provide children the same amount of physical activity. It has the same benefits on their physical, emotional and mental well-being. If you want your child to start becoming more active, here is a week-long checklist to try with him or her. Keep in mind: small, daily decisions done consistently can have a big impact on your child’s health.”(more)