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As the National Restaurant Association's Kids LiveWell marks its first anniversary this week, the program's membership has reached more than 100 participating restaurant brands committed to providing families with a growing selection of healthful children's menu choices.
When Kids LiveWell was first launched in July 2011, it included 19 inaugural brands.
The NRA announced this week that the program has added its first museum – the Children's Museum of Indianapolis – to its ranks, as well as Arby's Restaurants with more than 3,500 locations, and Qdoba Mexican Grill with more than 600 locations. Kids LiveWell now includes 104 brands representing more than 29,000 locations nationwide.
"Kids LiveWell continues to build momentum and expand into new venues in every state across the country," said Dawn Sweeney, president and CEO of the NRA. "We are so pleased to welcome new participants Arby's, Qdoba Mexican Grill and the Children's Museum of Indianapolis, and commend them for their commitment to children's nutrition and well-being. The industry's positive response to customer demand is exciting to watch, and we look forward to what the next year will bring."
To join Kids LiveWell, restaurants agree to offer and promote a selection of items that meet qualifying nutrition criteria based on leading health organizations' scientific recommendations, including the 2010 USDA Dietary Guidelines.
"We are impressed with the work that Kids LiveWell has done in the last year to promote healthful menu choices for children," said Karen Guido, vice president of Marketing at Qdoba. "At Qdoba, we strive to provide more nutritious options for our young guests and are proud to join the initiative and bring our wide variety of healthier choices to this growing table."
The NRA developed Kids LiveWell in collaboration with Healthy Dining, whose team of registered dietitians works with restaurants to identify and validate the qualifying menu choices, which focus on fruits and vegetables, lean protein, whole grains and low-fat dairy. Participating restaurants and their qualifying items can be found on HealthyDiningFinder.com.
Read more about health and nutrition.