FACTS

  1. Children who indulge in a diet high in junk food are more likely to be hyperactive than those who do not. Hyperactive children generally lack focus and may not be able to concentrate on simple tasks.
  2. Research suggests that childhood diets including burgers, pasta, pizza, chicken nuggets, french fries, processed sweetened cold cereals, sweets and soft drink negatively affects school performance and learning.
  3. Children who have increased amounts of omega-3 fatty acids perform better in school, in reading and in spelling and have fewer behavioral problems.
  4. In an Australian study, 396 children between the ages 6 and 12 who were given a drink with omega-3 fatty acids and other nutrients (iron, zinc, folic acid and vitamins A, B6, B12 and C) showed higher scores on tests measuring verbal intelligence and learning and memory after six months and one year than a control group of students who did not receive the nutritional drink.
  5. According to the Women’s and Children’s Health Network, diet has a significant effect on children’s study habits.
  6. Junk food and foods with high sugar content deplete energy levels and the ability to concentrate for extended periods of time.
  7. Nutritional deficiencies can seriously damage a child’s neural development, possibly leading to lower IQ and learning disabilities.
  8. Existing data suggests that with better nutrition, students are better able to learn, have fewer absences, and students’ behavior improves, causing fewer disruptions in the classroom.
  9. Want proof? In a study published in Child: Care, Health and Development (a European public health journal), researchers analysed the fast-food consumption and test scores in maths and reading of 12,000 fifth-graders. They found that children who ate fast food four to six times within a given week tested significantly lower in maths and reading compared with children who did not.
  10. Every student has the potential to do well in school. Failing to provide good nutrition puts them at risk for missing out on meeting that potential.  However, taking action today  to provide healthier choices in schools can help to set students up for a successful future full of possibilities.