It is no secret that childhood obesity is claiming one-third of the population of children in America.
The parents featured below took it upon themselves to create a variety of ways to fight childhood obesity.
From creating kid-size dumbbells, to implementing physical activity through playing cards, moms and dads alike are finding ways to develop healthier lifestyles for their children.
Kids learn through play so why not teach children how to follow a healthy lifestyle through play?
One big reminder, try not to talk about weight in front of your child or deny your child more food when he or she asks for it. Check out our article on what to do when your child is an overeater to find out why.
5-2-1-0 Let’s Go!
This childhood obesity prevention program targets schools, childcare centers, hospitals, and community organizations with a 5-2-1-0 approach: A catchy reminder to consume 5 servings of fruits and veggies daily, engage in only 2 hours or less of recreational screen time, participate in at least 1 hour or more of physical activity, and consume 0 sugary drinks. Currently, their workshops are only in Maine, but they are working on a national program. This graphic is adopted from Let’s Go! www.letsgo.org.
The MOV Band wristwatch encourages children to stay active throughout the day. Unlike a Fitbit or similar devices, MOV Band smart technology detects a child’s movement (whether running, jumping, walking, or dancing), and is then converted into mileage. More than fifty schools nationwide sell this product to its students, and they collectively participate in the 21-day “MovBand Challenge:” a competition for each student to reach 100 miles in three weeks. According to the schools’ results, they have seen a 25% increase in activity among its students!
Yoga is rising in popularity. But it’s also encouraging kids to participate, too! This YouTube series called Cosmic Kids is aimed at the adventurous and imaginative child. With creative computer animations and a cute, educational storyline in every episode, narrator Jamie takes us on an adventure to meet animals and landmarks that resemble the names of certain yoga asanas (poses). Her intriguing accent and expressive personality keeps kids entertained and tempted to try each asana.
The minds behind Growums created an interactive gardening kit to get kids growing their own fruits and vegetables! The pre-soiled kits are offered in six separate themes: Salad, Taco, Pizza, Ratatouille, Herb, and Stir Fry Garden. When a child registers his or her kit online, funny vegetable characters come to life and they show the kids how to tend their kits, harvest, and cook with the resulting produce. Great idea to get your kids interested in whole foods and the benefits of organic over conventional production.
These fitness-inspired baby and toddler WOD Toys are a great way to offer light exercise to your little ones! Modeled after gym equipment and developed by work-out enthusiasts, the toys are made of plastic, polyester, and leather. This line of lightweight fitness equipment includes kid-sized barbells, dumbbells, kettle bells, a plyo box, and even multifunctional rowers and bikes. Not only will WOD Toys help babies and toddlers develop and strengthen their fine motor skills, but it also cultivates their gross motor skills as well. Help to jumpstart a love of fitness and an active lifestyle for your children!
One of the best ways to introduce fresh whole fruits and vegetables into your child’s diet is through exposure points. And what better way to get them familiar with the sight of produce as play toys? In our video about why your child should be playing with food you’ll notice a simple grocery store we put together with a bookshelf with these cute bushels of vegetables, whole foods, pots and pans!
Not only will children enjoy imagining a trip to the grocery store, but this form of sensory play will get them more familiar with the sight of peculiar vegetables as a normal source of food! Studies have shown that kids who play with food have less of a chance of developing picky eating habits. We invite you to shop our Amazon store for more food toys and games of your choice!
A mom from Ohio created Exercards that double as a learning activity and physical movement cues. Complete with 26 cards in a deck, each card is equipped with directions and a cute animation to encourage kids to get up and move like the characters, totaling upwards of 50 physical exercises! It also stimulates cognitive development by practicing the days of the week, types of vegetables, hours on the clock, etc. in accordance with the repetition of each movement.
Ingredient Magazine is a healthy eating magazine for kids, offering food and cooking advice for ages 6 and up. It’s a great way to:
- educate kids on the importance of healthy eating
- get kids curious about food
- boost a child’s confidence in the kitchen
- engage critical thinking skills
- strengthen reading skills
- get more involved in creating healthier meals
Plus they feel grown up and empowered when they’re receiving magazines in the mail, too!
Jump Rope for Heart
The American Heart Association sponsors the Jump Rope for Heart fundraising event that is available all across the country. Conducted in schools at either P.E. class or before/after school, Jump Rope for Heart challenges students to learn the importance of heart-healthy habits, such as jumping rope, and engages them to participate in a valuable community service effort. Each school even has a chance to earn gift certificates for new P.E. equipment.
First Lady President Michelle Obama developed an initiative known as Let’s Move!, which was recently archived by President Trump’s administration, so the website and initiatives are no longer active). I am not sure what will happen to all these initiatives. Will the new administration pick up where Let’s Move left off and continue helping to improve the lives of children?
The goal used to focus on preventing future childhood obesity by providing parents with helpful information, fostering active and healthy environments, and providing healthier alternatives for meals at schools and in faith or community-based organizations, Let’s Move! is making every effort to support and motivate an end to childhood obesity. President Barack Obama has since established a Task Force on Childhood Obesity that implements an inter-agency plan with coordinated strategies, benchmarks, and ideals for every public and private sector to influence the importance of healthier choices.
Exercise is a part of a healthy lifestyle for kids and adults. Making the right food choices is also incredibly important. If a child’s diet is poor then he or she will not have the energy for exercise. Check out our article series on healthy eating for kids.
- How to Get Kids to Eat More Vegetables and Like Them Too
- Best Snacks on the Go video
- Do’s and Don’ts of Snacking
- Getting Picky Eaters to Try New Foods Using the Rotation Rule