Junk Food Banned in Mexican Schools

mexican-fajitas

Looks like our neighbors to the south are jumping ahead of us. At least in terms of junk food. According to several sources, the Mexican government is planning to ban junk food and fry-ups in primary and secondary schools in an attempt to fight one of the worst obesity problems in the world.

In America, we have similar problem. Now I know that First Lady Michelle Obama is leading an Anti-Obesity Campaign, however actions speak louder than words. And Mexico seems to be taking the action approach head-on. The United States should take note.

According to an article at guardian.co.uk, beginning next year in Mexico:

“…school shops will no longer be allowed to stock fizzy drinks, sugar-stuffed fruit juices, processed snacks, or more local delights such as chilli soaked sweets. Nor will school kitchens offer traditional standards such as fried tacos.”

via The Guardian

Now I remember when I was in elementary school, I brought a bagged lunch every single day. I literally did not buy lunch EVER! This is mostly because I was a vegetarian then, and because I was unbelieavably picky. My favorite meal was cheese and bread in any form possible. Pizza, Greek cheese pies, grilled cheese, quesadillas; they were all my favorites. But I digress.

Back to Mexico. I completely understand and applaud the Mexican government for taking a stand, but I think parents also need to reflect the administration’s plan. The bottom line is that even if kids aren’t offered these unhealthy foods at school, they might still be getting them at home. Plus, if they are going to eliminate all these choices, they better have some pretty tasty healthy food to offer instead, like these:

Healthier Refried Beans
Vegetable Patties
Low-Fat Macaroni and Cheese

Obviously, the Mexican government realizes that the students arent going to be jumping for joy when the changes begin.

According to the same article, Mexico’s education minister Alonso Lujambio told W Radio:

“”The kids are going to complain, of course…We are going to start a profound cultural change.”

via The Guardian

I really don’t think that’s possible unless they somehow can get the parents on-board. Another major problem that the government will have to figure out how to tackle involves the junk food vendors who congregate at school gates as the kids leave.

So even though Mexico is really leading a major stance against junk food eating, I’m still skeptical. There’s a lot of work to be done. That doesn’t mean that I’m not enthusiastically supportive because I am. I hope the U.S. follows on par.

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