Incorporating The "South Beach Diet" Into Schools?

One of the more popular articles I've posted on my Web site over the past year has been my detailed piece about the 12 reasons people should avoid the South Beach Diet. Evidently, none the nutritional experts at one Florida school district got that message.

Six schools in the Osceola County School District (a suburb of Orlando) are participating in a study funded by an organization founded by Dr. Arthur Agatston, the author of "The South Beach Diet." The announced goals of the study certainly sound appealing:

  • Can public school cafeterias really serve more nutritious food?
  • Will kids eat food that's better for them?
  • Will their health improve?

Although the Agatston Research Institute claims the 3,000 students participating in the study haven't been put on the low-carb South Beach Diet, many of its guiding principles have been incorporated nonetheless into school menus. But, as you can imagine, there have been some problems with incorporating the new menus.

For one, not surprisingly, kids just didn't like them. And, access to healthier ingredients has been an issue. Osceola is part of a buying group with other districts that have a long-term contract with a food distributor. The resistance isn't surprising, and that's just the beginning of their problems, that will take far more space to describe than I have here.

School administrators made this move in a well-intentioned effort to combat the spiraling obesity epidemic among kids and adults. However, the South Beach Diet is a "one-size-fits-all" diet that completely ignores the fact that we have different genetic requirements for optimal health. Universal diets never work for everyone, or even close... In fact, due to differences in biochemistry, some people actually need a high-carb diet (with limited or no grains), while others require the low-carb, high-protein diet that Dr. Atkins advocated.

This is the principle of nutritional typing which explains why one person will lose weight on a low-carb diet, while another will not lose any on the identical diet. If you want to learn how optimize your diet so you can lose weight, have more energy and slow down the aging process, healthfully and safely, I urge you to take my free nutritional typing test.

Yahoo News March 7, 2005

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