Nutrition For Kids
Nutrition For Kids
It’s no surprise that parents might need some help understanding what it means to eat healthy. From what used to be called “Food Guide Pyramid” to the new MYplate, can be really confusing. If you didn’t know the USDA MyPlate program teaches nutrition on a actual plate with the five food categories, fruits, vegetables, grains, proteins and dairy.
The good news is that you don’t need a degree in nutrition to raise healthy kids. Following some basic guidelines can help you encourage your kids to eat right and maintain a healthy weight.
Our Nutrition Promise
- Teach kids the importance of good nutrition and healthy eating habits.
- Empower kids to make wise food choices that will last them a lifetime.
Our approach to teaching nutrition is simple and fun — using hands-on, creative ways to stress the importance of eating healthy. We incorporate fun activities and interactive demonstrations that keep kids interested and involved.
Although weight is an issue, we do not put emphasis on weight or weight loss; nor do we place kids on diets. In fact, there is not a scale or mirror in sight. Instead, we instill healthy attitudes about food and promote a positive body image.
We teach them that through making good choices, eating healthy (most of the time!) and exercising, their bodies will naturally become healthy and strong. They will look and feel better about themselves. This in turn, helps them to accomplish more in school, on the playground, and at home.
Top five nutrition goals for a Fitwize kid:
Eat Fruits, Vegetables and Whole Grains Every Day: You need to eat grains every day because they supply most of the energy your body uses. When we breathe, think, heal and grow, we are “spending” energy. Whole grains are “superior” to refined grains because they have more fiber, vitamins, minerals and healthy phytochemicals (or plant chemicals). Fruits and vegetables give us many vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, fiber and phytochemicals. The nutrients from fruits and vegetables keep our skin, eyes and hair healthy. Aim for at least five fruits and vegetables every day.
Always Eat Breakfast: Everyone needs to eat breakfast every day! It keeps your mind sharp and fuels your body. Kids who eat breakfast every day do better in school and are able to maintain a healthy weight. Try to include a variety of foods. Traditional choices include eggs, whole grain toast, English muffins or bagels, cold or hot cereals with milk, or yogurt with fruit. Did you oversleep? Take some yogurt, a whole grain cereal bar or a peanut butter sandwich to-go.
Watch out for WHOA foods: “Go” (whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean meats, beans, tofu, and low fat dairy products) foods are the lowest in fat and added sugars; these can be eaten every day. “Slow” (refined grains, 100% juice, baked fries.) foods are higher in fat and added sugars than “Go” foods, but still lower than “WHOA” foods. You can eat “Slow” foods several times a week. “WHOA” (regular soda, fried foods, high-fat meats, whole milk, ice cream.) foods are the highest in added sugars and fats, and should be limited for rare occasions.
Limit non-homework screen time to 2 hours per day: The more time you spend playing videos, watching TV or surfing the net, the less time you have to do more active things, like come to Fitwize or play basketball. Time spent in front of the screen can lead to unhealthy weight gain, decrease your academic performance and is linked to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Sitting in front is also related to unhealthy snacking. Try to limit your non-homework screen time to 2 hours a day.
Be ACTIVE most days of the week: Find ways to be active every day. Exercising makes you stronger, healthier and smarter! Besides coming to Fitwize, make a list of favorite activities so you can refer to it when your 2 hour screen time is up. Include activities for the whole family!
*check with your local participating Fitwize 4 Kids to see what programs are being offered in your area.