Keep Kids Active and Healthy During the Summer
It’s important for all young people to keep active and eating healthy while school is out. Without the structure and resources that the school year offer, children are at greater risk for weight gain and unhealthy eating habits during the summer months. Here are some ways you can incorporate fun activity and nutrition into your child’s summer.
1. Look for a local summer program that promotes physical activity and healthy eating. Ask about the activities your child will be involved in, as well as the type of meals they will be eating.
2. Encourage your child to get outside and play. Ride a bike, join in on a neighborhood basketball or soccer game, or take a nature walk. Just make sure your child drinks plenty of water while out in the heat.
3. Keep healthy snacks around the house. Freeze some grapes or place a popsicle stick in the middle of a yogurt cup to make a frozen treat. Fill half your child’s plate with fruits and vegetables daily. Select fruit and vegetables in season. They taste better and are usually cheaper.
4. Turn off the TV and computer. According to a study by the YMCA of the USA, 50 percent of parents said computers, cell phones, and the television keep kids from being active and healthy. Encourage your kids to turn off the gadgets and be active with friends or family instead.
5. Give kids toys that encourage active play. Basketballs or soccer balls, jump ropes, or kites encourage physical activity. Outdoor games that the family can play together, such as dodge ball or baseball, are a great way to get everyone moving.
6. Take a walk together or create a scavenger hunt. It’s a great opportunity to not only get some physical activity for you and your child, but it’s a chance to bond.
7. Make healthy food with your child. Involve your child in preparing healthy meals and snacks. Take your child grocery shopping or ingredients and discuss foods that are good for them, such as fruits and vegetables.
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