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Your Letters: Have we cut the wrong things in school meals?

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Is your child obese?

Is it caused by his diet? Yes. No, not because of the fat in his food, but because of the unbalanced meals they are eating.

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The lack of fat and the excess of sugar, starch and some carbohydrates is to blame, along with the lack of exercise they are receiving.

If the body does not get adequate fat from food, the digestive system turns sugars, starches and carbohydrates into fat, which is deposited on the body as storage fat.

The fats eaten in the diet are used, while sugars, starches and carbohydrates are stored on the body as fat, which are among the leading causes of being overweight (obese), adding later to the risk of diabetes.

Having checked the local school lunch programs in area schools, I find that they could be 4-6 times as much fat as at present and still be short of recommendations. New recommendations from Washington say all fat be removed from milk and only skim milk used. You could add some fat to their home diet by adding two servings of whole milk to their diets. Using skim adds more starches and sugar and makes the diet more unbalanced. We feed our cats and dogs a ration which contains 10 to 12 percent fat -- school lunches are about 2 percent as now served.

Paul Beckel

Wadena

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