September is Childhood Obesity Awareness Month
One in three children in the United States are overweight or obese. Childhood obesity puts kids at risk for health problems that were once seen only in adults, such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease. The good news is that childhood obesity can be prevented. In honor of National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, LiveWell Johnson County encourages your family to make healthy changes together.
Get Active Outside
It’s recommended that children get 60 minutes of physical activity per day. The recommendation for adults is 150 minutes each week or about 30 minutes each day. Get your physical activity together as a family – walk around the neighborhood, go on a bike ride or play basketball at the park. Johnson County has over 365 parks and more than 455 miles of hiking, jogging and bike trails. Finding a new family favorite should not be difficult. Check out Black Bob Park in Olathe for several fun options. Little ones can “storm the castle” playground, while older children might enjoy the batting cages or playing basketball. Bring the whole family together for a game of miniature golf.
Limit Screen Time
Keep screen time (time spent on the computer, watching TV or playing video games) for children to two hours or less per day. Celebrate Worldwide Day of Play on September 30th by turning off your screens and doing outdoor activities. If the weather is bad, try active indoor activities, such as scavenger hunts or balloon games.
Make Healthy Meals
Buy and serve more vegetables, fruits and whole-grain foods. Find a new family-friendly, budget-friendly recipe on LiveWell Johnson County’s blog or at Choose My Plate. Engage children in the grocery shopping and meal preparation. Not only does it teach them a basic life skill, but it integrates educational concepts into real world scenarios. It also gives families a chance to bond and interact with each other. Mostly, it’s fun!
Taking small steps as a family can help your child stay at a healthy weight.