Assessment of a Districtwide Policy on Availability of Competitive Beverages in Boston Public Schools, Massachusetts, 2013
Published Date:Mar 03 2016
Source:Prev Chronic Dis. 13.
Pubmed Central ID:PMC4778379
Funding:1U48DP001946/DP/NCCDPHP CDC HHS/United States
Competitive beverages are drinks sold outside of the federally reimbursable school meals program and include beverages sold in vending machines, a la carte lines, school stores, and snack bars. Competitive beverages include sugar-sweetened beverages, which are associated with overweight and obesity. We described competitive beverage availability 9 years after the introduction in 2004 of district-wide nutrition standards for competitive beverages sold in Boston Public Schools.
In 2013, we documented types of competitive beverages sold in 115 schools. We collected nutrient data to determine compliance with the standards. We evaluated the extent to which schools met the competitive-beverage standards and calculated the percentage of students who had access to beverages that met or did not meet the standards.
Of 115 schools, 89.6% met the competitive beverage nutrition standards; 88.5% of elementary schools and 61.5% of middle schools did not sell competitive beverages. Nutrition standards were met in 79.2% of high schools; 37.5% did not sell any competitive beverages, and 41.7% sold only beverages meeting the standards. Overall, 85.5% of students attended schools meeting the standards. Only 4.0% of students had access to sugar-sweetened beverages.
A comprehensive, district-wide competitive beverage policy with implementation support can translate into a sustained healthful environment in public schools.
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