"The conventional wisdom that you can't serve healthier meals because kids won't eat them is false," said Benjamin Senauer, one of three economists who wrote the study.
Previous studies have concluded that students prefer fatty foods and that healthier meals cost more to make, the authors noted.
The study, which appears in the December issue of the Review of Agricultural Economics, analyzed five years of data for 330 Minnesota public school districts. It looked at compliance with federal standards for calories, nutrients and fats.
When the researchers crunched all the numbers they found that schools serving the healthiest lunches did not see a falloff in demand.
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