Find Information About:

Drugs & Supplements

Get information and reviews on prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, vitamins, and supplements. Search by name or medical condition.

Pill Identifier

Pill Identifier

Having trouble identifying your pills?

Enter the shape, color, or imprint of your prescription or OTC drug. Our pill identification tool will display pictures that you can compare to your pill.

Get Started

My Medicine

Save your medicine, check interactions, sign up for FDA alerts, create family profiles and more.

Get Started

WebMD Health Experts and Community

Talk to health experts and other people like you in WebMD's Communities. It's a safe forum where you can create or participate in support groups and discussions about health topics that interest you.

  • Second Opinion

    Second Opinion

    Read expert perspectives on popular health topics.

  • Community


    Connect with people like you, and get expert guidance on living a healthy life.

Got a health question? Get answers provided by leading organizations, doctors, and experts.

Get Answers

Sign up to receive WebMD's award-winning content delivered to your inbox.

Sign Up

Health & Parenting

Font Size

Out to Lunch

WebMD Health News

Sept. 6, 2001 -- As children everywhere go back to school, Jo Kingsley, RD, director of food and nutrition services at the South Kitsap School District in Port Orchard, Wash., offers tips to help parents better understand and analyze the nutritional content and value of a typical school lunch should their kids decide to buy instead of brown-bagging it this year.

Take "pizza day" in her school system, says Kingsley, also Northwest Regional Director for the American School Food Service Association, based in Alexandria, Va.

There are an average of 752 calories in the entire meal -- including a triangular slice of pepperoni pizza, a serve-yourself "fruit and veggie" bar, and a Dixie cup of ice cream. This meal has 28.1 grams of protein, 108.4 grams of carbohydrates, 25.3 grams of fat, and 590.7 milligrams of calcium. Milk and water are always available to drink with meals.

"Parents might not know that we are using a lower-fat turkey pepperoni or cheese mixed with low fat cheeses to get the calories and fat down in the meal," she tells WebMD. Kingsley prints the calories, fat, protein, and carbohydrate content of all the meals she serves on her district's menus.

"We show parents our goal for calories, fat, and protein per meal and how close to that we come," she says. For example, the goal is to have fat below 30% of total calories in all meals, and on average, meals had 27.8% of calories from fat, she says.

On average, most meals have about 654 calories and the target is 675 calories, a goal they meet 97% of the time, Kingsley says. Most growing children require about 2,200 calories per day.

As another example, take "hamburger day", also a kid favorite. The meal includes a hamburger, oven-baked fries, and an open fruit-and-veggie bar with salad dressing, for a total of 501 calories. This meal contains 25.4 grams of protein, 64.4 grams of carbohydrates, and 17.1 grams of fat.

Most school meals, she says, must contain a minimum of two fruits and vegetables and meet certain dietary guidelines before the government will reimburse the school's meal programs. Schools must offer children five items from four food components: a serving of meat or meat alternate, a bread or bread alternate (at least one each day and a total of eight servings over the course of a week), two different fruits or vegetables, and milk.

Today on WebMD

Girl holding up card with BMI written
Is your child at a healthy weight?
toddler climbing
What happens in your child’s second year.
father and son with laundry basket
Get your kids to help around the house.
boy frowning at brocolli
Tips for dealing with mealtime mayhem
mother and daughter talking
child brushing his teeth
Sipping hot tea
Young woman holding lip at dentists office
Which Vaccines Do Adults Need
rl with friends
tissue box
Child with adhd