Did you know about the new change in breakfast cereals at all Pittsburgh Public Schools? Beginning August 2016, breakfast cereals at your child’s school have transitioned to alternative wholesome, whole-grain and lower sugar products. These new products include Golden Grahams cereal, Kix and Apple Cinnamon Cheerio’s by General Mills.

According to the 2015 USDA Dietary Guidelines, Americans are recommended to limit added sugars to less than 10 percent of calories per day to promote a healthy lifestlye.1 Children ages 4-8 should consume no more than 3 teaspoons of sugar a day. As your child grows into his or her pre-teen and teen years the maximum amount of added sugar should not exceed 5 to 8 teaspoons.1 Unfortunately, the average American child consumes approximately 32 teaspoons of sugar per day or 128 grams; equivalent to nearly a 1 Liter bottle of Mountain Dew.

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Refined sugar found in soda, candy and many processed item’s increases the risk of obesity, hypertension, high blood pressure, diabetes and other health related conditions. To fight obesity related conditions and to align school breakfasts with the Dietary Guidelines, the Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act (HHFKA) of 2010 was created.

Why new cereal options? Here at the Pittsburgh Public School District, your child’s health and future is most important to us. Lower amounts of added sugar in your child’s daily meals will reduce long term consequences such as obesity, hypertension and diabetes. Join us as we now offer whole grain, lower-sugar cereals. A well balanced breakfast of cereal, skim or 1% milk and fresh fruit is essential to kick of your child’s day at school!

Remember: breakfast is FREE for all Pittsburgh Public School students!

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-A well balanced breakfast includes 1 cup of a whole grain, low sugar cereal. 8oz of skim or 1% milk and 1/2 cup of fresh fruit.

Sources:

  1. https://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/guidelines/chapter-1/a-closer-look-inside-healthy-eating-patterns/#added-sugars
  2. Picture credit: General Mill’s Cereal

By: Amber Deemer, Dietetic Intern

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