ATLANTA - It's likely your kids have noticed the changes in school lunches this year.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture has issued changed dietary guidelines for the first time in 15 years.
The new rules include reducing the amount of breads and grains that can be served to students each week.
Also, different is a decrease in the number of calories that can be served. Now, on a single lunch tray the guidelines call for no more than 650 calories for elementary students, 700 for middle school and 850 for high school students.
The goal is to curb the rising obesity epidemic, but, as always, getting kids to eat the food is a challenge. The Fulton County School System turned to Children's Healthcare of Atlanta for help in getting kids to eat school lunches which now offer more fruits and vegetables, but fewer deserts, meats.
11Alive wants to help parents with any questions about the change in guidelines and how to incorporate healthy food into their homes.
We brought in a chef, a natural health doctor and several registered dieticians for a live Help Desk chat Thursday morning on 11Alive News Today.
Saira Gillani - Natural Health Atlanta
Ruth Taylor - Fulton County Schools
Holly Thaw - CHOA Children's Healthcare of Atlanta
Diane Shelton - GNRH Gwinnett, Newton & Rockdale Health Dept.
Chef Ford Fry - JCT. Kitchen & Bar
JCT Kitchen & Bar will be donating profits from lunch on Thursday, October 18 as a part of the Hidden Valley Lunch Break for Kids program, raising money for nutrition education programs. If you would like to join or would like more information about the program please visit www.lunchbreakforkids.com.