Study underscores need for food literacy, national school food program

October 31, 2022

The survey-based study is one of many projects related to children’s health and well-being, conducted as part of HEAL’s larger mission to mobilize knowledge to create healthy, thriving communities. 

“Collectively, most findings in our lab show kids are not eating enough fruits and vegetables,” said HEAL director Jason Gilliland. “This study provided a baseline to see what’s going on in this area so we can help develop programs to address this.” 

It’s widely accepted fruits and vegetables are important for preventing lifestyle-related chronic disease and maintaining overall health. Poor dietary patterns in children are linked to lower academic performance, an increased risk of diabetes and higher body mass indexes. 

“We know kids who go to school hungry can’t focus on the lesson. They’re focusing on their grumbling stomachs,” said Gilliland, who is also a scientist at the Children’s Health Research Institute and Lawson Health Research Institute.

Read the full story by Keri Ferguson at Western News