Sodexo Serves Up Healthy and Nutritious School Meals on a Balanced Plate
June 02, 2011
Sodexo Schools Applauds USDA for Adopting Proven Model for Student Nutrition Programs
GAITHERSBURG, Md., June 2, 2011 – Sodexo applauds the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for adopting the balanced plate as the new graphic representation for good nutrition with the new MyPlate icon. Sodexo, a student well-being champion that serves more than 480 school districts across the country, began teaching students about good nutrition using a balanced plate concept at the start of the 2010-2011 school year.
Sodexo uses the balanced plate concept to demonstrate and teach students how to select the right mix of foods from all food groups. Using a balanced plate as a visual guide, Sodexo encourages students to fill 25 percent of their plate with lean protein, 25 percent with wholesome grains, and the remaining 50 percent with plenty of colorful fruits and vegetables.
"The great thing about the balanced plate is that it is visual and easy to understand," said Lorna Donatone, Sodexo education president and chief operating officer. "Designing a plate in a balanced way is not a diet or a fad, it's about combining healthy sources of protein, carbohydrates and unsaturated fats that are full of health-promoting nutrients to help children stay full longer."
A meal or snack that contains the right mix of foods in correct portions ensures students naturally consume less added sugar, sodium and saturated fat. In many cases, a meal that is planned in a balanced way helps students feel full even though they are consuming fewer calories. Wholesome grains, fruits and vegetables contain more water and fiber that help satisfy students’ appetites, steady their blood sugars, and help sustain their energy for better mental and physical performance in and out of the classroom.
The proper mix of foods on a balanced plate also helps ensure students are eating more nutrient dense foods, meaning they contain more nutrients for the calories consumed. Eating nutrient dense foods is important for the prevention of disease, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and certain cancers.
"This fall, Sodexo will continue teaching students about the importance of building a balanced plate because it's a common sense approach to eating right and it will continue to help students achieve better health today and for years to come," said Steve Dunmore, president, Sodexo Schools. "Students need consistent nutrition education and adults can serve as great role models. Sodexo will be helping students to identify balanced meals through their menus, through nutrition education, and by sharing culinary tips with parents to help build healthier meals at home."
Sodexo is committed to take measurable sustainable actions that ensure a brighter future in the areas of health and wellness, environmental stewardship and community development. Sodexo focuses on nutrition, achievement, environment, community and activity to promote student well-being.
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Sodexo, Inc. (www.sodexoUSA.com), leading Quality of Daily Life Solutions company in the U.S., Canada, and Mexico, delivers On Site Service Solutions in Corporate, Education, Health Care, Government, and Remote Site segments, as well as Motivation Solutions such as Esteem Pass. Sodexo, Inc., headquartered in Gaithersburg, Md., funds all administrative costs for the Sodexo Foundation (www.SodexoFoundation.org), an independent charitable organization that, since its founding in 1999, has made more than $15 million in grants to fight hunger in America. Visit the corporate blog at www.sodexoUSA.com/blog.
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