Skip directly to search Skip directly to A to Z list Skip directly to navigation Skip directly to page options Skip directly to site content

Guideline 3

Provide a quality school meal program and ensure that students have only appealing, healthy food and beverage choices offered outside of the school meal program.

boy holding lunch traySchools should model and reinforce healthy dietary behaviors by ensuring that only nutritious and appealing foods and beverages are provided in all food venues in schools, including school meal programs; à la carte service in the cafeteria; vending machines; school stores and snack bars/concessions stands; fundraisers on school grounds; classroom-based activities; staff and parent meetings; and after-school programs.


  • Promote access to and participation in school meals.
  • Provide nutritious and appealing school meals that comply with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.
  • Ensure that all foods and beverages sold or served outside of school meal programs are nutritious and appealing.

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) recommend a diet rich in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free and low-fat dairy products for persons aged 2 years or older. The DGA also recommend that children, adolescents, and adults limit their intake of solid fats (major sources of saturated and trans fatty acids), cholesterol, sodium, added sugars, and refined grains.1


Back to previous School Environment   Physical Education & Physical Activity Forward to next