The original version of the USDA’s January 15 blog, “USDA teams up with the NFL and National Dairy Council to Kick Off ‘Fuel Up to Play 60,’” stated that “the USDA is making every effort to make sure that today’s children are the first American generation to have a shorter life expectancy than their parents.”
They’re doing a good job of it.
Seriously, they’ve since corrected the error, but when I think about all the fatty, cholesterol-laden crap that the USDA’s National School Lunch Program serves schoolchildren, I can’t help but wonder if the original version wasn’t more accurate.
Although more schools are starting to offer healthy vegan options, mystery meat, chicken nuggets, and greasy cheese pizza boats are still staples in most school cafeterias. A USA Today investigation revealed that the beef and chicken served in school lunches doesn’t even meet the questionable quality or safety standards of many fast-food restaurants.
The “Fuel Up to Play 60” program appears to be little more than a forum for the National Dairy Council to promote dairy products to kids. Cow’s milk, which is linked to many childhood ailments, including allergies, ear infections, recurrent bronchitis, juvenile diabetes, and asthma, as well as heart disease, prostate cancer, and other serious diseases, is already widely available in schools. (Read Kayla Coleman’s post “Milk: Does It Really Do A Body Good” to learn more about the Dairy Council’s stronghold on school lunches.)
Unhealthy school lunches are contributing to the childhood obesity epidemic and putting kids at risk for an array of health problems, which can shorten their lives. A National Cancer Institute study found that people who eat even a small amount of red meat each day are more likely to die early, mostly from heart disease or cancer.
If you want to help your child live a long, healthy life, wean him or her off of milkshakes, macaroni and cheese, hamburgers, hot dogs, and chicken sandwiches. Kids who develop a taste for wholesome vegan foods rather than animal products are much less likely to develop weight problems, diabetes, high blood pressure, and cancer. Don’t count on the USDA for sound health advice. See the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine’s healthy school lunch site or check out VeganLunchBox.com for “brown bag” recipes.
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