OUR VIEW: Schools stepping up for kids’ health

By Daily News • Last Updated 12:03 pm on Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Kids who eat breakfast and lunch not only are healthier, but they’re also better able to focus and learn.

The hard truth is, though, there are more kids than we know who don’t get these basic meals. Our local schools have done a fantastic job in stepping to the plate when it comes to making sure their students are fed — opening up these first two meals of the day for those who might not have enough food at home.

Some of our local schools are going one step further and finding ways to provide fresh vegetables and fruit that, when possible, are grown close to home. Last week, The Daily News wrote that Greenville, Belding and Carson City-Crystal, among others, have access to options such as salad bars, cantaloupe and locally grown apples.

We know kids are notoriously picky when it comes to fruits and veggies, but exposing them to the variety that’s available and giving them a chance to try new things is key. We all know the less processed a food is, the better it is for you. And studies have shown that kids who learn to eat healthier options from the food pyramid grow up to be healthier adults.

One more shout out to our local cafeterias. In light of recent national news about “pink slime,” we’re glad to hear they aren’t serving this to our kids.

Apparently this slime, which is officially called “lean, finely textured beef,” is what’s left after potentially questionable parts of the cow are processed to separate the lean meat from the fat.

It’s then treated with ammonium hydroxide, which is naturally produced in small amounts by our bodies, but also is used to make things like rubber, fertilizer and plastic.

We’re thankful the schools in our area put kids’ health first.

Editorial opinions are the consensus of The Daily News editorial board.

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