Five Healthy Resolutions for Kids
1. Eat right.
Is your kitchen stocked with high calorie, low nutrient, processed foods? If the answer is "yes," then get rid of it! A healthy diet consists of foods such as fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, and fresh meat and dairy products. Kids eat what is available to them. Try keeping healthy foods readily accessible, such as a bowl of fruit or veggies with dip on the kitchen counter. It’s difficult to pass up a healthy snack, especially when the pantry no longer has the unhealthy, processed food that it once did!
2. Drink less or completely eliminate soda, sports drinks, and fruit drinks from diets.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, consumption of sugar drinks in the United States has increased over the last 30 years among both children and adults. Sugar drinks have been linked to poor diet quality, weight gain, obesity, and, in adults, type 2 diabetes. An average can of soda has about 40 grams of sugar. That’s 16 sugar cubes! Not only are sodas, sports drinks, and fruit drinks high in sugar, the consumption of these drinks often replaces other healthy drinks such as water and milk.
Americans spend billions of dollars annually trying to lose weight. Can you imagine what would happen if we just reduced our high calorie drink consumption?
Click here to see the "What am I drinking?" chart developed by the American Heart Association.
3. Reduce screen time
Remember the good ol’ days when kids stayed outside playing until they were called in for dinner? Regardless of your generation, it's easy to see why the percentage of kids that are overweight is increasing at a rapid pace. Video games, the internet, and 1,000 different television channels from which to choose are keeping kids from getting the exercise they need to stay fit. If video games, the internet, and television are activities kids can’t do without, try reducing the screen time to one to two hours a day, at the most.
4. Get moving!
What can kids do with their free time once they reduce their screen time, other than homework of course? Get moving! Help out with the yard or house work, play hide-and-seek, walk the dog, go for a bike ride, fly a kite, or walk to the library or a friend's house. There is never a shortage of activities that incorporate exercise!
5. Join a sports program or team
What better way is there to get into shape than having fun and making new friends? Your local YMCA and city recreation centers have classes and sports programs that provide the perfect venue for fun ways to get fit. These facilities provide both traditional and non-traditional sports programs such as soccer, volleyball, cheer, baseball, softball, football, martial arts, swimming, dance, and gymnastics.
Add to the list! The possibilities for getting healthy are endless!
Here is an activity booklet based on The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.
Fruit Mini Book
Exercise Word Search - Easy
Exercise Word Search – Difficult
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