Jan 3, 2017
Finding a kids' meal that's not too big and not too small can be a struggle -- just ask Goldilocks. Some restaurants follow calorie guidelines for bundled meals (entrée, sides, drink) offered to kids up to age 13, but until now such guidelines didn't exist for single servings. RAND researchers, with an expert panel, developed single serving guidelines to help kids avoid eating too much when eating out.
When restaurants serve right-sized portions, kids can choose single serving items to build a healthy meal under 600 calories.
Mix and match 2 to 3 right-sized servings to stay under 600 calories.
Healthy meals don't include fries or dessert. If they are served, portions must be small to keep the whole meal within the calorie limit.
Portions in most restaurants are too large, pushing their calorie count over the recommended limit.
Trimming restaurant portions is important because food prepared away from home accounts for almost one-third of the calories Americans eat. 32%
Adapted from "Kid's Menu Portion Sizes: How Much Should Children Be Served?" by Deborah A. Cohen, Lenard I. Lesser, Cameron Wright, Mary Story, and Christina D. Economos, Nutrition Today, Vol. 51, No. 6, November/December 2016, pp. 273-280, available at http://journals.lww.com/nutritiontodayonline/fulltext/2016/11000/Kid_s_Menu_Portion_Sizes__How_Much_Should_Children.3.aspx.
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