Healthy Living Starts at Home
Prevent childhood obesity and live a healthy lifestyle as a family.
In the recent push to improve the health of Americans, a number of public health programs have emerged that promote healthier diets and physical activity. From these programs, one message rings loud and clear: Healthy living starts at home!
Parents are the key to helping their children learn about and maintain a healthy lifestyle. This can be done through focus on three main elements: attitude, nutrition and exercise.
Research shows the habits formed in childhood related to eating and exercise carry over into adulthood. It is important to remember to lead by example, and be sure that your behaviors are ones you want your children to carry on. Keep your kitchen stocked with healthy options. Eliminate bad food cues and replace them with positive, healthy options, like keeping a bowl of fruit accessible for example. Work together as a family to learn proper portion control and how to maintain a balanced diet.
There are plenty of nutritious, budget-friendly foods available these days. Keep in mind that a healthy diet emphasizes fruits, vegetables and whole grains, as well as low-fat dairy and lean sources of protein, and will also be low in saturated fats and salt. Having protein in your diet can help you to stay full longer, so remember to never eat a carb without having protein too!
In general, exercise will drive you to have better health and better nutrition. Exercise is the glue that holds the other pieces in place. There is no excuse for not being active; you just have to make the time. If you are having trouble finding a set time to work out, then break your activity up throughout the day—engaging in at least ten minutes at a time. Every bit adds up!