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Parents Urged to 'Make Change to Save Change' at Back-to-School Time
Date:7/22/2009

KANSAS CITY, Mo., July 22 /PRNewswire/ -- A return to hectic school-year schedules puts families on the go and may cause kids to miss out on key nutrients. A recent report in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition showed Americans are short-changing themselves on nutrients. To address the shortfall, the Midwest Dairy Council challenges parents to consider easy food changes that help address nutrition deficiencies without breaking the bank. Parents are urged to make change by consuming more dairy products, which helps to save change in their wallets, and ensures they aren't short-changed on nutrition. For example, at just 25 cents per glass, milk provides one of the richest sources of well-absorbed calcium in the American diet. Plus it contains eight other essential nutrients, including vitamin D that helps enhance calcium absorption.

Back-to-school time also is a good time to brush up on the A-B-Cs and 1-2-3s of meals and snacks that pack the most nutritional and economic value.

"Even in this economy, parents can't afford to compromise on their kids' nutrition. I encourage families to start the day with breakfast," says Nikki Stahr, a registered dietitian with the Midwest Dairy Council. "Select foods from three of the five food groups, including dairy. Dollar for dollar, dairy is one of the most economical sources of nutrition on your shopping list."

Stahr says another place to make change is in kids' snacks. According to the NPD Group's 'Snacking in America 2008' report, children consume 30 percent of America's snack foods, including candy, candy bars, potato chips and gum. Dairy is a better choice than empty-calorie snacks and drinks that also drain parents' wallets.

"Avoid the expensive snack aisles and focus on economical snacks that pay you back in nutrition, like yogurt and cheese," says S
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SOURCE Midwest Dairy Council
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