Most well known for the catchy, rhyming commercial showcasing NFL players, the fantastic program to help children learn to eat healthy has returned for the new school year. The commercials, starring NFL players such as Washington Redskins’ Chris Horton, hope to use their popularity to drive home to kids the message that good foods and good play go hand in hand.
Created by the trusted National Dairy Council and the NFL, working in conjunction with the USDA, this multi-faceted program covers all aspects of child nutrition and health. It has improved this year by adding a local, state and national student ambassador program.
Getting kids to eat healthy foods and exercise for the recommended 60 minutes every day has proven to be a tall task for many families. By adding support from well known and respected NFL players, it’s hoped that kids will establish life long healthy habits and stem the rise of childhood obesity. Parents and teachers who wonder how to get started with this task can find some great resources on the Fuel Up to Play 60 website, which features video clips, recipes, and exercise hints.
As school budgets get tighter, administrators are doing just about everything to cut costs, including diminishing some of the necessities like teachers’ salaries, library book funds, and even school buses.
Although diminishing school budgets is not exactly good news, some positive results may come out of the cuts. If the budget in your school district leaves hardly any room for school buses and your neighborhood is the first to get the axe, consider starting up a “Walking School Bus” in your community.
A Walking School Bus is a new initiative created by the Healthways/ Blue Zones Vitality City group in the Beach Cities area in Southern California. The Healthways/ Blue Zones group is dedicated to help their communities live longer and healthier.
Walking school buses are a group of children who ride their bikes or walk to school with one or more parent supervising. Children learn the rules of traffic in a safe environment and get plenty of exercise on their way to and from school each morning. As childhood obesity rates continue to increase, a walking school bus might be a good way to sneak some exercise into your child’s routine.
Childhood obesity is increasing at an alarming rate throughout the world. The World Health Organization calls it one of the most serious public health problems of the 21st century.
Overweight children are likely to become obese adults, who have a higher probability of developing diabetes and cardiovascular diseases at a younger age. These diseases can cause disabilities and premature death.
Globally, the number of overweight and obese children under the age of five was estimated to be more than 42 million in 2010.
While most people think being fat is a problem only in rich countries, nearly 35 million of these children were living in developing countries. The childhood obesity problem is rising rapidly in low- and middle-income countries, especially in urban areas.
The rate of children who are overweight and obese worldwide increased from 4.2% in 1990 to 6.7% in 2010, according to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.
As school districts continue to tighten their budget, certain classes become extinct to make way for a more fiscally efficient approach to education. If the days of playing kickball, bombardment and whiffle ball in PE classes are long gone, what is taking their place to fulfill the physical activity requirements of growing children?
In 2001, The Accelerated School in Los Angeles, California piloted a program called YogaEd, designed by Tara Guber, in an effort to bring yoga into the classroom. The objective of this strictly secular curriculum was to teach proper posture and body awareness, techniques for relaxation and stress management, and self esteem building through compassionate problem resolution. The program’s goals were to instill life long habits for healthy living, enhance physical, social, emotional and mental health, and strengthen academic performance.
In 2003 a study was conducted to determine the results of the program, and the findings were in full support of not only its continuation at the Accelerated School, but also in the advancement of sharing the curriculum with more than 150 other schools.
Maruchy Lachance is president of Running Ninja!, a lifestyle brand for runners by runners. Running Ninja! offers a wide variety of apparel and gifts for runners to keep you happy and inspired while you’re on the run.
Adopting a healthy lifestyle is difficult enough, but sometimes the biggest challenge is getting your kids on board. Here are some ways to make the transition delicious and enjoyable for them and stress-free for you.
When it comes to food the best approach is to keep the same favorite foods while substituting the ingredients. When using ground beef or ground poultry to make meatballs, hamburgers or meatloaf, save money, calories and fat by just adding seasonings and oatmeal. This healthy substitute will go undetected and keep your dish moist. (more…)