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BOX 5-1

Assumptions Related to the Proposed Planning Models

General assumptions of the proposed planning model

  1. On average, foods offered will be equal to foods consumed; it is inappropriate to inflate the Nutrition Standards or the Menu Requirements, or both, to account for food offered but not consumed.

  2. Children with higher or lower energy requirements relative to the Estimated Energy Requirement will adjust their intakes to meet their needs (by altering their intakes at other eating occasions or by eating less of the food served at the school meals).

  3. Energy, nutrient, and food intakes can be partitioned into meals.

  4. Changes in school meals alone cannot fully eliminate dietary inadequacies. To meet daily goals for food and nutrient intakes, the quality of the non-school foods will also need to improve.

Specific assumptions of the proposed planning model for nutrients

  1. The current nutrient intake distributions can be accurately estimated.

  2. The assumptions of the EAR cut-point approach are met:

    1. Intake is independent of requirement (assumed true for all nutrients except energy)

    2. The requirement distribution is symmetric (not true for iron)

    3. The variance of intake is greater than the variance of the requirement (assumed to be true for children’s intakes)

    4. Observed intake distributions have been adjusted to reflect usual intakes

  1. Unless efforts are made to target children in the tails of a nutrient intake distribution, the shape of the distribution will not change if the median intake is changed.

Specific assumptions of the proposed planning model for foods

  1. Intakes that adhere to the MyPyramid recommendations will achieve a low prevalence of dietary nutrient inadequacy and a low prevalence of potentially excessive nutrient intakes.

  2. On average, the selection of school foods offered within a food group will match the foods that were used to develop the nutrient profiles of the MyPyramid food groups.

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