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National health regulations place restrictions on cafeteria food

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National health regulations place restrictions on cafeteria food

Colin Mitchell

Colin Mitchell

Colin Mitchell

Nicole Stuessy

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In an effort to promote healthy eating, the National School Lunch Program introduced new regulations this August on what school cafeterias can serve.

These regulations require students to buy a side of fruits or vegetables with their meal and the cafeteria had to change the recipe for some items.

“The kids don’t like them,” cafeteria manager  Mrs. Rosa said. “I believe some of them will eat the fruits but the vegetables they just throw away.”

Pizza hut pizza is one of the items that had to be reformulated.

“During the summer they had to work and work and change the whole recipe for it,” Mrs. Rosa said. “Now it’s all wheat, reduced pepperoni, reduced fat on cheese, and the crust is not as thick.”

Chick-fil-A is no longer offered in the cafeteria because they couldn’t change their recipe.

“People think it’s for a good cause, but taking away Chick-fil-A makes no sense,” sophomore Urooj Qureshi, said. “The food they replaced it with isn’t that good. No one really eats the other food, and its just goes to waste in the trash.”

Along with these changes, the school store doesn’t sell ramen noodles anymore and can only serve a limited number of healthy snacks.

“Overall, the food this year is still good, but comparing it to the food last year, it’s not that great,” sophomore Reed Waterman, said. “Removing the school store was a bad decision because it gave us an easier and more convenient way to get food if you didn’t want to wait in the long lines.”

Because they don’t like the changes, more students have started bringing their lunches from home.

“I don’t know that long term it’s going to really make teenagers be healthier,” nurse Ginger Sudduth said. “Teenagers still like their fast food, they still like their pizza, and they still like their burgers and fries. They are still going to go to fast food restaurants and eat unhealthy food.”

If these changes improve students’ eating habits remains to be seen.

“I would hope they would be effective because it’s just important that people are eating healthier,” assistant principal Mike Bennett said. “But it’s also unfortunate that people don’t take this upon themselves and have to have someone give them a rule saying ‘you must eat this’.”

While these changes may not be liked, they are here to stay.

“I think people are getting used to it, like Pizza hut and the crust,” Mr. Bennett said. “If you have a child and they don’t like what you cook them eventually they will, in a way this is the same sort of thing.”

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