mom and daughter cooking healthy food

How Do Kids Stay Healthy?

Over the last few years, there has been an increase in understanding that kids that are overweight or obese are more likely they will become sick. These kids are more likely to have high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, and heart disease.

High blood pressure is more common in children with obesity. Children with high blood pressure are more likely to develop strokes, heart disease, and kidney disease, seizures in their life.

What can you do?

We don’t want your kids to become sick or have health problems. We can prevent this by creating healthy habits with the following goals everyday!

5 servings of fruits & vegetables

Watch portions

  • A serving of meat is equal to playing cards
  • A serving of fruit is about the size of a tennis ball
  • A serving of butter or dressing is the size of ping-pong ball
  • For toddlers, the size of a portion is the size of the palm of their hand
  • Fill your 1/2 your plate with fruits and vegetables, 1/4 with protein, and 1/4 with starch (whole grains)

Mix it up

  • Add veggies to foods you already make like pasta, soup, pizza, etc.
  • Add fruit to your cereal, with pancakes.
  • Many fruits and vegetables taste good with a dip.
  • Buy frozen or canned!

Use non-food rewards for celebration

  • Give ribbons or stickers for good behavior
  • Plan a special day: game night, sleepovers, camp out in the back yard

2 hours or less of screen time

  • Screen time is time on TV, computers, games, phones, tablets, etc.
  • Set family-guidelines like no TV during meals, before homework, or chores are done
  • Make a list of things to do instead like puzzles, read books, play board games or go out outside

1 hour of more of physical activity

  • Active kids tend to be healthier kids, healthier kids are better learners
  • Physical activity reduces feelings of anxiety and stress
  • Be active as a family. Take a walk around the neighborhood. Put on music and dance. Play hide and seek. Go on a bike ride. Play with your pet. Play tag. Play ball.
  • You don’t have to get one hour all at once. Small bursts of activity adds up! Do 15 minutes four times a day!

0 sugary drinks, more water

Put Limits on juice

  • 4-6 ounces a day for children 1-6 years old
  • 8-12 ounces a day for children over than 7 years old
  • No juice is less than 1!

Choose water!

  • 70% of your body is made of water. It is important to replace the water you lose everyday with more water!
  • Keep water bottle on hand, so kids can fill it up all day.
  • It is the #1 thirst quencher.
  • Add fresh lemon, lime, or orange to water for natural flavor.

No caffeine!

  • Soda has no nutritional value and is very high in sugar!
  • Energy drinks have caffeine and other stimulants that are not healthy for your heart