NYC

Christine Quinn Kids Meals Proposal Would Hold Restaurant Chains To Same Standards As Schools

Christine Quinn, New York City Council speaker and mayoral candidate, speaks to supporters of same-sex marriage during a rall
Christine Quinn, New York City Council speaker and mayoral candidate, speaks to supporters of same-sex marriage during a rally on Christopher Street after the U.S. Supreme Court overturned the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) and declined to rule on the California law Proposition 8 in New York, U.S., on Wednesday, June 26, 2013. Democratic lawmakers said theyll seek further protections for gay couples after the U.S. Supreme Court struck down part of a federal law denying them benefits, as congressional Republicans signaled that further battles on marriage equality would shift to the states. Photographer: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Although she opposes the soda ban, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn said, if elected mayor, she would hold kids meals at restaurant chains to the same nutritional standards as school lunches.

The New York Post reports that under Quinn's plan chains such as McDonald's would be mandated to make their kids meals meet the same USDA standards for meals served at elementary schools.

Federal guidelines restrict school lunches to 650 calories, 7 grams of saturated fat and 740 milligrams of sodium.

One Applebee's kids offering-- grilled cheese with fries-- delivers a whopping 1,210 calories 2,340 milligrams of sodium.

"The best way to ensure we have healthy adults is by developing healthy kids and while we have been making great strides in New York we still have a long way to go,” Quinn said at the Union Square Greenmarket on Monday. “As mayor, I want to prioritize children’s health and instill, at a much younger age, healthy behavior.”

The announcement is in line with Mayor Michael Bloomberg's infamous "nanny" health initiatives, which include restricting trans-fat, cracking down on junk food, and of course, the soda ban.

Quinn assured however, her proposal would not interfere with New Yorkers' choices.

"You’ll still be able to order whatever you think is right for your children," she said. "But what we’re saying is that companies can’t spend millions of dollars on marketing or include items on children’s menus if those foods clearly are going to lead to obesity, which could lead to diabetes or other diet-related illnesses."

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