- Be a “whole grain-rich” grain product; or
- Have as the first ingredient a fruit, a vegetable, a dairy product, or a protein food; or
- Be a combination food that contains at least ¼ cup of fruit and/or vegetable; or
- Contain 10% of the Daily Value (DV) of one of the nutrients of public health concern in the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (calcium, potassium, vitamin D, or dietary fiber).
Foods must also meet several nutrient requirements:
• Calorie limits:
° Snack items: 200 calories
° Entrée items: 350 calories
• Sodium limits:
° Snack items: 230 mg**
° Entrée items: 480 mg
• Fat limits:
° Total fat: 35% of calories
° Saturated fat: < 10% of calories
° Trans fat: zero grams
• Sugar limit:
° 35% of weight from total sugars in foods
*On July 1, 2016, foods may not qualify using the 10% DV criteria.
**On July 1, 2016, snack items must contain 200 mg sodium per item
Here is a before and after chart from the USDA brochure on the snacking standards:
Nutrition Standards for Beverages
All schools may sell:
- Plain water (with or without carbonation)
- Unflavored low fat milk
- Unflavored or flavored fat free milk and milk alternatives permitted by NSLP/SBP
- 100% fruit or vegetable juice and
- 100% fruit or vegetable juice diluted with water (with or without carbonation), and no added sweeteners.
Elementary schools may sell up to 8-ounce portions, while middle schools and high schools may sell up to 12-ounce portions
of milk and juice. There is no portion size limit for plain water.
Beyond this, the standards allow additional “no calorie” and “lower calorie” beverage options for high school students.
- No more than 20-ounce portions of
- Calorie-free, flavored water (with or without carbonation); and
- Other flavored and/or carbonated beverages that are labeled to contain < 5 calories per 8 fluid ounces or 10 calories per 20 fluid ounces.
- No more than 12-ounce portions of
- Beverages with 40 calories per 8 fluid ounces, or 60 calories per 12 fluid ounces.
- The sale of food items that meet nutrition requirements at fundraisers are not limited in any way under the standards.
- The standards do not apply during non-school hours, on weekends and at off-campus fundraising events.
- The standards provide a special exemption for infrequent fundraisers that do not meet the nutrition standards. State agencies may determine the frequency with which fundraising activities take place that allow the sale of food and beverage items that do not meet the nutrition standards.
- Accompaniments such as cream cheese, salad dressing and butter must be included in the nutrient profile as part of the food item sold.
- This helps control the amount of calories, fat, sugar and sodium added to foods by accompaniments, which can be significant.
USDA is seeking comments through October 28, 2013. View all Standards online at http://www.regulations.gov
We applaud their efforts to care for the health of our most important citizens - our children.
Here are 5 top snacking do's and don'ts:
Basic Guide to Snacking
1. Don’t eat if you are not hungry. The calories eaten when you are not hungry do not help you eat later or less at the next meal.
2. Don’t skip breakfast. Skipping breakfast will cause you to consume more foods later in the day.
3. Do eat smaller, more frequent meals.
4. Do choose the right foods. If your snacks are based on whole grains, fruits and vegetables, with a little nonfat dairy and lean protein, you will be on your way to better health. You will want to watch your intake of salt and saturated fat to keep your heart healthy.
5. Do think out with the bag!! That is, out with foods that are sold as snacks in all those cute packages and bags. Refined carbohydrates such as pretzels, crackers, cookies and chips are often high in sodium and fat, and low in fiber.
Judy’s passion for cooking began with helping her grandmother make raisin oatmeal for breakfast. From there she earned her first food service job at 15, was accepted to the world famous Culinary Institute of America at 18 (where she graduated second in her class), and went on to the Fachschule Richemont in Switzerland where she focused on pastry arts and baking. But after learning that the quality of a croissant directly varies with how much butter it has, Judy sought to challenge herself by coming up with recipes that were as healthy as they were tasty.
Judy received The Culinary Institute of America’s Pro Chef II certification, the American Culinary Federation Bronze Medal, Gold Medal, and ACF Chef of the Year. Her enthusiasm for eating nutritiously and deliciously leads her to constantly innovate and use the latest in nutritional science to guide her creativity, from putting new twists on fajitas to adapting Italian brownies to include ingredients like toasted nuts and cooked honey. Judy’s publishing company, Food and Health Communications, is dedicated to her vision that everyone can make food that tastes as good as it is for you.