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Nutritional quality of children's school lunches: differences according to food source.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  22463765     Owner:  NLM     Status:  Publisher    
OBJECTIVE: To assess the nutritional quality of lunchtime food consumption among elementary-school children on Prince Edward Island according to the source of food consumed (home v. school). DESIGN: Students completed a lunchtime food record during an in-class survey. Dietary adequacy was assessed by comparing median micronutrient intakes with one-third of the Estimated Average Requirement; median macronutrient intakes were compared with the Acceptable Macronutrient Distribution Ranges. The Wilcoxon signed rank test was used to assess differences in nutrient intakes according to source of food consumed. SETTING: Elementary schools in Prince Edward Island, Canada. SUBJECTS: Grade 5 and 6 students (n 1980). RESULTS: Foods purchased at school were higher in nutrient density for ten micronutrients (Ca, Mg, K, Zn, vitamin A, vitamin D, riboflavin, niacin, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12) compared with packed lunch foods from home, which were higher in three micronutrients (Fe, vitamin C and folate). School lunches provided sufficient protein but were higher in sugar and fat than home lunches. Foods brought from home were higher in carbohydrates, fibre and Na than foods purchased at school. CONCLUSIONS: The overall nutritional quality of lunches was poor, regardless of source. A significant proportion of foods consumed by the students came from home sources; these were lower nutritional quality and were higher in Na than foods offered at school. Findings suggest that improving the dietary habits of school-aged children will require a collaborative effort from multiple stakeholders, including parents.
Jennifer P Taylor; Kimberley J Hernandez; Jane Mary Caiger; Donna Giberson; Debbie Maclellan; Marva Sweeney-Nixon; Paul Veugelers
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Publication Detail:
Type:  JOURNAL ARTICLE     Date:  2012-4-2
Journal Detail:
Title:  Public health nutrition     Volume:  -     ISSN:  1475-2727     ISO Abbreviation:  -     Publication Date:  2012 Apr 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2012-4-2     Completed Date:  -     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  9808463     Medline TA:  Public Health Nutr     Country:  -    
Other Details:
Languages:  ENG     Pagination:  1-6     Citation Subset:  -    
1Department of Applied Human Sciences, University of Prince Edward Island, 550 University Avenue, Charlottetown, PE, Canada, C1A 4P3.
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