Overview Of The Healthy Food For Healthy School Act

1529 words - 6 pages

It was lunch time and students walked into the cafeteria to purchase lunch. A wide variety of food was placed in front of them to choose from ranging from pizza to burgers to bags of chips and chocolate bars. Their choices were endless up until a new reform took over and enlisted new changes. The Healthy Food for Healthy School Act was placed on September 1st, 2008. Its policy entailed schools to practice healthy eating where they would be “dropping trans fat from food and beverages sold in schools and establishing mandatory nutrition standards for food and beverages sold in schools” (Ontario Ministry of Education). While this reform plays a significant role in the health of students, it also has a great impact on other sectors.
Healthy foods and having a healthy lifestyle, for students in particular, plays an essential role for their learning and everyday life. Research shows that children who do not acquire the right amount of nutrition are “'particularly susceptible to the moment‐to‐moment metabolic changes that impact upon cognitive ability and performance of the brain” (School Meal and School Nutrition Program Handbook). As described on the ministry website, poor diets lead to the lack of motivation and attentiveness and influences the students learning. With an ongoing unhealthy lifestyle, children may “have lifestyle habits that could put them in the fast lane for developing cardiovascular disease as early as their 30s” (Ontario Ministry of Education). This reform plays a significant role for students as they are learning to eat healthy especially if its context is embedded within the curriculum to further enhance the purpose of the reform to portray it through different means.
While the implementation of the reform is placed for the good of students, the reality within numerous schools is that pre-made food is the cheapest and fastest way to go. As stated in Food: How School Food Affects Student Health, “where there is a lack of creativity and motivation to cultivate a healthy and sustainable menu, fast-food chains, junk-food vendors, and soda companies rush in to fill the void, offering partnerships with schools that allow them to market their products in schools” (2008). With the new reform in place, schools have been instructed to follow new guidelines and nutrition programmes to meet the standards of a healthy school. This required the removal of vending machine sodas, and the reconfiguration of the foods in all school cafeterias. With this new reform in place, schools have seen various outcomes from this change. Having the Healthy Food for Healthy School Act means that any links with corporations would result in minimal interactions and weaken the links they have. This can be seen as both a positive and negative development. The positive outlook on it is that students will benefit greatly from the healthy act as they will be encouraged to eat healthy foods and take part in an active and healthy lifestyle. The downside...

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