Now served at Hollister schools: spicy baked cheez-its

First-grader Kyanna Hernandez picks up her carrots and celery in the lunch line Wednesday at Sunnyslope Elementary School. Federal guidelines changed for school lunches this year so schools now have to provide a "rainbow" of fruits and vegetables througho

It’s not just the free lunch program that the U.S. Department of Agriculture is reworking, as the division continues to roll out increasing demands on student nutrition.
The new nutrition rules—which went into effect July 1 last year for all schools participating in the National School Lunch Program—mean more whole grains; only fat-free or low-fat milk; and reduced saturated fats, trans fats and sodium.
One snack that’s new in the Hollister School District is the spicy baked cheez-its, which have been subbed in as a healthy alternative to Flamin’ Hot Cheetos.
A 0.75-ounce bag of the treat has 100 calories, 3.5 grams of fat and 200 milligrams of sodium, but the kicker is that the first ingredient is whole wheat flour, said Ann Pennington, the district’s manager of student nutrition.
Compared to Cheetos, the new snacks are a healthy choice. The original brand- name snack likely had 300-325 milligrams of sodium, more calories and more grams of fat, Pennington said.
“And, of course, the first ingredient was probably not whole wheat, which is a requirement these days,” Pennington said.

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