CLEVELAND & CHANHASSEN, Minn.--(EON: Enhanced Online News)--Officials at T.C. Gurney Elementary school and the Life Time Foundation today announced increased school lunch meals sold week over week in September after only one month under the new Back 2 Basics healthy school lunch program. The new, healthier menu results from a collaboration between school nutrition staff and the Life Time Foundation and enables students to eat only natural, healthy foods for school lunches by eliminating unnatural ingredients, such as high fructose corn syrup; bleached flour; artificial sweeteners, colors and preservatives; trans fats and hydrogenated oils; hormones and antibiotics in beef; and where possible, hormones and antibiotics in other animal products.
“The team at Gurney Elementary, and Marti in particular, have been instrumental throughout the entire school lunch transition”
“Over the past several weeks, we’ve seen a steady increase in meals sold through our school lunch program,” says Marti DeSantis, nutritionist at T.C. Gurney Elementary School in Chagrin Falls, Ohio. “Beyond the nutritional benefits, the kids are enjoying the foods and like the changes made possible with the Life Time Foundation. The feedback from students and their parents has been overwhelmingly positive and we’re excited to continue to teach them clean eating habits they can use throughout their lives.”
Via the program, the Life Time Foundation aims to inspire much needed change while addressing health concerns our kids face today. Childhood obesity has increased 300 percent over the past 30 years, 33 percent of our children are overweight or obese, and one in three children will develop diabetes in their lifetime. The main priority must be on delivering healthier lunches while inspiring change at home. The cost of not doing so is much too high as evidenced by these health concerns.
"As a parent of two students at Gurney, I’m so happy that my kids can get a healthy lunch at school that they will actually eat,” says Caroline Brosnan, Gurney Elementary parent. “My kids ask to buy school lunch all of the time, and I can feel really good about saying yes!"
By providing the difference between the cost of the schools existing budget and the cost of the new, healthier menu—an average of approximately 35 cents per meal—the Life Time Foundation is driving change one school at a time. Currently, more than 25 schools nationwide are serving healthier options to more than five thousand students with the Back 2 Basics program. In addition, Life Time has also committed to providing resources to schools and parents to help enable students to make clean eating choices at home.
“The team at Gurney Elementary, and Marti in particular, have been instrumental throughout the entire school lunch transition,” says James McGuire, director of operations, Life Time Foundation. “Eliminating unnatural ingredients from the menu is no easy task, and the school, parents and students have all risen to the occasion, showing dedication to the program; ultimately becoming great ambassadors for us within the school district. We hope the success of the program will inspire other schools to make similar changes.”
About Life Time Foundation
As the charitable giving component of Life Time, the Life Time Foundation is about inspiring healthy people and a healthy planet one mission at a time. Our current mission is improving children's nutrition — One School Lunch Program at a Time. We are on a mission to ensure every child has a healthy start in life, beginning with proper nutrition and exercise. Unlike many other charitable organizations in which portions of donations are consumed by administrative costs, 100% of every dollar donated to the Life Time Foundation supports our missions. That's because all administrative costs are contributed by Life Time Fitness, Inc.
About Life Time Fitness, Inc.
As The Healthy Way of Life Company, Life Time Fitness (NYSE:LTM) helps organizations, communities and individuals achieve their total health objectives, athletic aspirations and fitness goals by engaging in their areas of interest — or discovering new passions — both inside and outside of Life Time’s distinctive and large sports, professional fitness, family recreation and spa destinations, most of which operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The Company’s Healthy Way of Life approach enables customers to achieve this by providing the best programs, people and places of uncompromising quality and value. As of Oct. 23, the Company operated 107 centers under the LIFE TIME FITNESS® and LIFE TIME ATHLETIC® brands in the United States and Canada. Additional information about Life Time centers, programs and services is available at lifetimefitness.com.