Study finds link between school lunches, obesity

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Students who regularly eat school-furnished lunches are more likely to be overweight and have higher levels of cholesterol than those who eat meals brought from home, a study found.

The survey of middle-schoolers found that 39 percent of those who always or almost always had cafeteria meals were overweight or obese, compared with 24 percent of those bringing food from home. The researchers, from the University of Michigan Health Systems in Ann Arbor, presented the findings Saturday at a meeting of heart specialists in Atlanta.

They didn't specify that school lunches caused the children to be overweight, and the surveys found added evidence of unhealthy diets and lack of exercise in the same group that regularly went through the lunch line. Still, the research adds to evidence that schools at worst do too little to fight obesity in American youths.

-- Bloomberg News

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