Midwest Dairy Association

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Nourishing Children's Futures

Jean H. Ragalie, RD
National Dairy Council


With school back in season, it is a good reminder that a quality breakfast, healthful eating habits and increased opportunities for physical activity can make a big impact on overall academic performance among students — otherwise known as the Learning Connection as highlighed in the Wellness Impact Report. It is National Dairy Council's (NDC) aim to ensure that children reach their full potential and that they have a bright and healthy future. One way NDC is committed to improving our children's future and promoting child health and wellness is through Fuel Up to Play 60 — the nation's largest in-school health and wellness program, created by NDC and the National Football League in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Fuel Up to Play 60 launched nationally four years ago with a simple mission: empower students to create healthy change in school. We are proud to continue making a national impact working with a "for youth, by youth" program helping students choose healthier foods and encouraging them to get active for 60 minutes every day. More than 11.5 million students are actively involved in more than 73,000 schools nationwide, including more than 100,000 enrolled adults whose support is critical to the success of the program. This fall, Fuel Up to Play 60 is launching new programs and partnerships to help kids lead healthier, more active lives.

In addition to the back to school season, September marks Feeding America's Hunger Action Month. 1 in 5 children live in a household faced with food insecurity and NDC is working together with Feeding America and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics to address this issue and help make nutrient-rich dairy foods more available to children.

The health and future of the nation's children is an important conversation and NDC — in conjunction with programs and partnerships such as Fuel Up to Play 60 and Feeding America — has had the opportunity to help build a strong foundation for them. These discussions and actions to address child health are needed at home and in school, and we cannot do it without your support.

I encourage you to get involved and help create a better and brighter future for children. Visit Feeding America to make a difference by donating and volunteering at your local food bank. Visit Fuel Up to Play 60 to learn more about empowering millions of children across the nation in leading healthy changes.

In good health,

Jean H. Ragalie, RD
National Dairy Council



Learn more on Lactose Intolerance and Join us at FNCE


With the Food and Nutrition Conference and Exposition (FNCE) right around the corner in Houston, NDC is ready to address lactose intolerance misperceptions in person and continue education opportunities! It's important that people with lactose intolerance do not miss out on the enjoyment and important health benefits of low-fat and fat-free dairy foods.

This year, NDC is partnering with FoodNetwork.com nutrition expert Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, and Chris Shepherd, owner of Underbelly restaurant in Houston — named one of the top 70 restaurants in the world — to cook up delicious lactose intolerance-friendly foods! Join Toby and Chris at the culinary demonstration on Monday, October 21 at 9:30 a.m. in the Exhibition Hall.

To keep up with happenings at this year's FNCE, follow NDC on Facebook and Twitter and follow the #BeyondLI hashtag. For more information on lactose intolerance, check out NDC's new tip sheet on what you need to know.


Flavored Milk's Impact in Schools

Milk has been a staple in school meal programs for decades and with the school year having started, it is important to remind parents and students on the benefits of nutrient-rich foods as part of a balanced diet. Low-fat and fat-free milk, including white and flavored, contain a unique package of the nine essential nutrients that children need to grow into strong and healthy adults and the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans note it is important to establish the habit of drinking milk at a young age.

A recent study from Nutrition Today looked at school milk consumption and highlighted flavored milk's role on child health. The authors noted that "school-aged children do not currently meet the daily recommended intakes for dairy foods and also fall short on many of the nutrients that milk provides." Results from the study also found that "removing flavored milk from schools had significant unintended consequences on children's milk consumption, which may negatively impact their nutrient intake."


Fuel Up to Play 60 Update

Fuel Up to Play 60 Asks: Are You In?

Research shows healthy students are better students and simple solutions can have a big impact. This school year, Fuel Up to Play 60 — the nation's largest in-school health and wellness program — is asking everyone to join them in increasing access to improved nutrition and regular physical activity in schools. There are plenty of changes in store for the new school year, and Fuel Up to Play 60 wants to know: Are you in to help make our schools healthier?

Here is what's new for 2013-14:

  • FuelUpToPlay60.com has a simplified, fresh look and debuted a new student Dashboard where students can Earn, Collect, Achieve. This Dashboard is the ultimate Fuel Up to Play 60 game for students to earn Points, collect Badges, and achieve Levels to win exclusive NFL prizes.
  • This year, Fuel Up to Play 60 and partners will ask everyone to rally around two key timeframes to support physical activity and proper nutrition. "Make Your Move" will kick off in October/November 2013 to empower children and adults alike to get up and be active. "It Starts with School Breakfast" in February/March 2014 will ask everyone to do their part to increase access to school breakfast for all students. Stay tuned for more exciting details!
  • Also new this year, Fuel Up to Play 60 and the National Parent Teacher Association are joining together to equip families with tools and resources to make healthy changes both in school and at home. Working hand-in-hand, the two organizations will strive toward the common goal of raising an active and health-conscious generation.

Visit Fuel Up to Play 60 online for more information on what's new this year and how you can get involved.


Fuel Up to Play 60 Student Shares Love of Healthy Cooking through GENYOUth's AdVenture Capital Program

Fuel Up to Play 60 has empowered thousands of students nationwide to lead healthy changes in their schools, and the 2013-14 school year will be no different. In February, Lily A., a seventh grader at Milford Middle School in N.H. and Fuel Up to Play 60 State Ambassador, heard that GENYOUth Foundation was offering grants up to $4,000 for students to lead change in their schools as part of their AdVenture Capital program. AdVenture Capital gives students the chance to identify a need in their schools, come up with an idea and then pitch their ideas for improving healthy eating and physical activity. Lily is passionate about healthy eating and hopes to become a chef someday. She recognized that many of her peers weren't eating healthy meals and snacks, so she got to work forming a plan to get them excited about eating healthy through a series of after-school cooking classes called, What's Cooking in Titan's Kitchen?

"When I got the application, I thought, 'What can I do that I love, that will be fun?'" Lily said. "So I decided to do these classes."

So far, she has hosted four sessions for 35 students, teaching them how to make healthy recipes she calls "Appeteasers," which included kale chips, guacamole and pizza. She has also garnered local and national press through her great work as a winner of an AdVenture Capital grant.

"The pizzas were a big hit — we really liked those," Lily said. She added that she feels her peers are gaining new knowledge not only about how to cook, but also about how to appropriately measure portion sizes.

Lily, along with four other Fuel Up to Play 60 students, received $4,000 in funds and had a once-in-a-lifetime experience meeting and discussing her idea with renowned business leader Warren Buffett at Berkshire Hathaway's annual meeting. Of the whole experience, Lily said, "It's really fun. Now, when I Google my name, I see all this stuff come up about AdVenture Capital and Fuel Up to Play 60. It's an amazing feeling to know I accomplished this. I have pride in myself."

Students now have another opportunity to turn their ideas into a reality since the second round of the AdVenture Capital grant program opened August 30 via the Fuel Up to Play 60 website. Applications are open to all students registered for Fuel Up to Play 60, and the deadline to apply is October 22, 2013. For more information, visit http://school.fueluptoplay60.com/adventure-capital/.

Read more on Lily through a quick fire Q&A with Fuel Up to Play 60.


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MyPlate News

Start your Day the MyPlate Way


Breakfast is a vital part of the day, especially as children head back into school mode! According to the Wellness Impact Report, students who eat breakfast have a higher intake of key nutrients and have better attention and memory to help in school.

Start your day with a balanced meal that includes fruit, whole grains and low-fat or fat-free milk for a good source of protein! For more information on building a healthy breakfast, visit www.ChooseMyPlate.gov.

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