Over 7,000 People Spoke Up for School Food Nutrition



7,492 people—including members of Salud America!—submitted public comments to address concerns over a USDA proposal to weaken school food nutrition standards. The proposal, brought forth on Nov. 25, 2020, would allow flavored, low-fat milk, cut whole grain-rich servings in half, and ease restrictions on sodium to enable nutrition directors more time to meet sodium reduction targets. The proposal was open for public comment from Nov. 25 to Dec. 28, 2020. A federal advisory committee will consider the public comments and release a finalized version of the rule in spring 2021, according to the School Nutrition Association. "For the health of Latino and all children, I urge the USDA to preserve strong nutrition standards for meals served in schools. Providing 'flexibility' by ...

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USDA Dietary Guidelines Ignore Expert Advice to Cut Back on Sugar and Alcohol



The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) have issued their new dietary guidelines for 2020-2025. But they’re missing some important expert guidance: Reducing sugar and alcohol intake. The Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, made up of 20 expert scientists, advised that the USDA and HHS reduce suggested sugar intake be lowered from 10% to 6% of daily calories and that daily alcohol intake for men be reduced from two to one drink a day. Thousands of people, including many Salud America! members, spoke up in agreement over the past few years, pushing for these and other strong nutritional guidelines. Despite expert advice that these sugar and alcohol restrictions would help fight obesity and other health disparities, the ...

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Comment Now: USDA Wants to Weaken School Food Nutrition Standards Again



Once again, the Trump administration is going after school nutrition guidelines. A USDA proposal brought forth on Nov. 25, 2020, would allow flavored, low-fat milk, cut whole grain-rich servings in half, and ease restrictions on sodium to enable nutrition directors more time to meet sodium reduction targets. This isn’t the first time the administration has tried to weaken school food nutrition. Just a few months ago, the U.S. Agriculture Department sought to ease restrictions on sodium and whole-grain requirements in school meals, but a federal district judge struck it down due to violations of regulatory law, according to The New York Times. The proposed rule is open for public comment until Dec. 28, 2020. Leave a comment to speak up for school food nutrition! Comment ...

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#SaludTues Tweetchat 1/5: How to Start 2021 with a Healthier Lifestyle!


physical activity healthy lifestyle woman walking

Are you making a New Year's resolution for 2021? It might be spending more time outside. It might be quitting smoking. Or you could be trying to eat healthier. What we eat and drink affects our body’s ability to prevent, fight, and recover from infections, like COVID-19. Let’s use #SaludTues on Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2020, to tweet about how we can keep our New Year's goals of eating healthier, getting more physical activity inside and outside, and quitting smoking! WHAT: #SaludTues: How to Start 2021 with a Healthier Lifestyle! TIME/DATE: 1-2 p.m. EST (Noon-1 p.m. CST), Tuesday, Jan. 5, 2021 WHERE: On Twitter with hashtag #SaludTues HOST: @SaludAmerica CO-HOSTS: @UsA2_Latinos, @VocesenSalud, @SAresearch, @Wellmedgives, @PublicHealthMap, @MotherToBaby, @Ashorg ...

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#SaludTues Tweetchat 11/17: How a Healthy Food Retail Environment Advances Health Equity


Healthy Food Equity

Food insecurity and health disparities disproportionately affect lower income communities and communities of color. These disparities are only exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic. Access to healthy food should be a universal right. It’s clear that we must reevaluate how food retail currently works in our country. We must rebuild a more equitable and just system. We can work together to promote food equity in our communities and across the country. This tweetchat coincides with the new release of a National Research Agenda on healthy food retail, published as a Special Journal Issue. Join #SaludTues at 1 p.m. ET on Nov. 17, 2020, to tweet about the importance of healthy food retail environments for advancing health equity. WHAT: #SaludTuesTweetchat: How a Healthy Food ...

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USDA Extends Free School Meals for All Kids for 2020-2021 School Year


Latina girl drinks milk at cafeteria free school meals

By CDC Healthy Schools Guest Blogger for Salud America! Even though parents are used to juggling multiple roles and responsibilities, 2020 has brought on challenges. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has particularly impacted Latinos, many parents are helping their children with virtual learning while also balancing responsibilities at work and at home. If one of your new responsibilities is making sure your student is set up for success with breakfast and lunch, but you are stressed over buying groceries and making nutritious meals during the school day, there are solutions! The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is providing free school meals for all kids younger than 18 years during the entire 2020-2021 school year. USDA previously enabled free school meals ...

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Ángela García: Helping Her Community Through Art and a Free Fridge


Ángela García Free Fridge

Ángela García wasn’t planning on becoming an artist. She entered college in the pre-med track, intending to go into a medical career. But then she started taking art history classes. And she kept taking them, despite still being in the pre-med track. “I was like, ‘You know what? I don’t like this. Maybe I don’t like the sciences as much as I thought I did. And I’m really interested in this art history curriculum.’ So, I switched over at the end of my sophomore year,” García said. Now she’s a senior art history major at Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas, with several large-scale art projects under her belt, having rekindled a passion for creative work from her childhood. “I used to do painting when I was younger but I kind of fell out of it for a ...

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Report: 1 in 5 U.S. Latino, Black Children Have Obesity


two girls in class school physical activity to fight obesity

Children of color continue to struggle with obesity. Obesity rate continues to be significantly higher for Latino (20.7%) and black children (22.9%) than for white children (11.7%) ages 10-17, according to the new State of Childhood Obesity report from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). Obesity—and other chronic diseases—are more prevalent among those of color and those in poverty because discriminatory systems have disinvested in healthy policies and basic resources for them. In the midst of the current COVID-19 pandemic, which is worsened by obesity, it is more critical than ever to prioritize children’s health. Latino children and young adults account for over 40% of the COVID-19 deaths among people ages 0-24, according to the CDC. To prioritize children’s ...

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Berkeley Bans Junk Food in Store Checkout Aisles


BerkeleyPasses Ban Junk Food in Store Checkout Aisles

The United States has one of the highest childhood obesity rates in the world. That statistic sounds worse when considering the ways companies target unhealthy foods and drinks to Latino and other children of color — all contributing to health inequities and a higher obesity. This is why civic leaders in Berkeley, Calif., passed legislation to make it the the first U.S. city to ban junk food and candy in grocery checkout aisles. The will will go into effect early next year. "Placement of unhealthy snacks near a register increases the likelihood that customers will purchase these foods and drinks when willpower is weak at the end of a long shopping trip," City Council member Kate Harrison said in a press release. The Ban of Junk Food in Store Checkout Aisles Although a ...

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