According to 2010 data, more than a quarter of students ate fruit once a day or not at all, while about a third of students ate vegetables once a day or not at all.
Teens like Katie Stagliano, 14, who was honored at last September’s Clinton Global Citizen Awards and was a speaker at last year’s Midwest Produce Conference & Expo, can inspire both her peers and her elders.
Stagliano’s nonprofit organization starts and maintains vegetable gardens and donates the harvest to help feed people in need.
For all those radio ads to stop defiant teen behavior with “parent-proven” programs, perhaps one of the best things we can do for our teens is to create an environment with ample encouragement and modeling for physical activity and fruit and vegetable consumption.
This is another reason why U.S. Department of Agriculture efforts to improve nutrition for school meals and for food sold at schools is deserving our strongest support.
When communication breaks down about the inner world of our teens, at least we can talk fresh produce. When words fail about awkward topics, we can at least agree on the wonders of the Honeycrisp apple and the white-flesh peach.
And that’s something.
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