Restaurants to Offer Healthier Kid Menus

Menu Options to Cut Back on Sodium, Fats and Sugar

By Amanda Guerra
|  Friday, Jul 15, 2011  |  Updated 5:27 PM CDT
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Restaurant chains are expanding their children's menus to include more healthy options.

Amanda Guerra, NBCDFW.com

Restaurant chains are expanding their children's menus to include more healthy options.

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Hamburgers, french fries and soda move over. Nineteen restaurant chains across the U.S. are now vowing to serve more healthful meals for kids.

Wednesday the National Restaurant Association announced it's part of their new program, "Kids Live Well."

Participating restaurants include Dallas-based Chili's Grill & Bar alongside Burger King, IHOP, Cracker Barrel, Denny's and Joe's Crabshack, among others.

Restaurants such as Chili's have already been testing healthier items on children's menus, others will add on the new fare in the next few months.

In order to be considered "healthy" menu options must be less than 600 calories, include at least two or more servings of fruit, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein and/or low-fat dairy.

The meal will also limit sodium, fats and sugar.

"If you go to restaurants at least you have the option to eat healthy," said Raquel Mireles, senior manager of Culinary Innovation at Chili's. "We want to see healthier options on the menus for our kids and not just the same thing kids always order."

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