Eating right and exercising is about more than just looking good. Staying healthy can help you reduce the risk of serious dangers like heart disease, diabetes, strokes and cancer – not to mention give you more energy.
Not everyone is taking care of their bodies. According to the Mayo Clinic, the number of overweight children in America (ages 6 to 11) has doubled in the past two decades. Also, the number of overweight teens has tripled during that time. In total, about 25 million U.S. children and adolescents are overweight.
In an attempt to reduce childhood obesity, new laws in California have banned soft drinks and fattening, sugary snacks. The legislation could go even beyond that; Congress may make a federal law restricting the sale of junk food in public schools across the nation.
Check out Nutrition.gov for new, tips and data about eating healthily. For parents, visit KidsHealth.org for tips on raising your kids to be nutritious eaters, or go to FamilyFun for delicious children’s recipes that sneak in healthy veggies.
The good news is that eating healthily and staying active can be easy and fun. While adults associate exercise with an hour on the treadmill, kids can experience the benefits just by playing games. KidsHealth offers tips staying active. Remember that fitness for kids involves three elements: endurance, strength and flexibility. To build endurance, sports like basketball, tennis, running or swimming are great. Developing strength doesn’t have to mean lifting weights; instead, even climbing and doing handstands builds muscles. For flexibility, reaching for objects out of range and practicing splits can help.
Check out the resources below for tips on staying active (and some fun games to play!)
This site is full of games, fitness challenges, fun recipes, quizzes and information about the human body.
Some tips from the experts. Try some games that include the whole family, or make chores into a friendly challenge.
Read this article about fitness for the whole family. Scroll to the end for some great suggestions on how to substitute household items for gym equipment.
This site has tons of ideas for playing and staying active.