NBA Champ Lobbies for Vegetarian School Lunches
Basketball star John Salley went to Capitol Hill in November to explain why healthy school meals are so important.
Salley—the first National Basketball Association player in history to play on three different championship-winning teams—called on Congress to strengthen school meal programs to fight childhood obesity. He was joined by Reps. Jared Polis, D-Colo., and Dennis Kucinich, D-Ohio, and dozens of Washington, D.C.-area students.
“Students need more fruits and vegetables that will help them stay healthy, fit, and ready to learn,” said Salley, who played for the Detroit Pistons, the Miami Heat, the Chicago Bulls, and the Los Angeles Lakers. “That’s why it’s important for Congress to stay on top of its game by reforming the Child Nutrition Act.”
Institute of Medicine Calls for School Lunch Overhaul
School lunch lines need more healthful plant foods, according to the Institute of Medicine (IOM). In October, the IOM released a comprehensive report recommending that school meals include more fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, and less saturated fat and sodium. IOM experts join the American Public Health Association and the American Medical Association in calling for vegetarian school meal options. The report also recommends cutting down on processed meats due to their sodium content and link to colorectal cancer.