Fighting Obesity: A 10-Point Healthy Eating Plan for School-Age Children

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As obesity becomes an even greater problem for American families, getting children off to a solid start in the development of good eating habits, which must last a lifetime, can be a tremendous challenge. The American Association of Family & Consumer Sciences offers a 10-point family eating plan developed by the teacher-members of AAFCS.

Now that we are several months into the new school year and the rush of those first days are behind us, the American Association of Family & Consumer Sciences (AAFCS) thinks this is a good time to implement a family eating plan, which focuses on the dietary habits of the school-age children in the family.

Here are 10 Tips from members of AAFCS:

1. Parents should be a positive role model

a. limit portion sizes

b. cook with less fat

2. Get active

a. plan family activities to get everyone moving

b. encourage fun activities with friends

3. Make eating an activity in itself

a. don't eat while watching TV or riding in car

b. sit down in the kitchen/dining room as a family

c. involve kids in menu choices, prep, and clean up

4. Don't use food as a reward or punishment

a. spend quality time with kids

b. celebrate by doing something fun together

c. don't withhold food as punishment

5. Watch what your kids drink too

a. limit fruit juice to 12 oz. per day or less

b. don't allow empty calories like sodas, even diet soda

c. encourage drinking of low fat milk

6. Don't be too restrictive

a. limit, don't eliminate sweets

b. don't put kids on a diet unless recommended by a physician

7. Limit television, video and computer time

a. reduce TV time to 2 hours per day

b. do not allow TV in kids' bedrooms

8. Focus on positive goals

a. run laps with their classmates or bike for 20 minutes without getting tired

b. minimize number of hours spent playing computer games, emailing, instant messaging, etc.

c. encourage some activity such as stretching while watching TV instead of snacking

9. Take small steps as a family.

a. substitute fruit for dessert

b. park your car farther away from your destination

c. limit fast food

d. take a family walk

10. Follow Dietary Guidelines and consult professionals as needed

About AAFCS and Obtaining Quotes/Interviews

Founded in 1909, AAFCS is the only not-for-profit 501 (c)(3) organization dedicated to bringing people together to improve the lives of individuals, families, and communities. AAFCS’ more than 10,000 members are elementary, secondary, and post-secondary educators, researchers, and administrators, cooperative extension educators, and other professionals in business and industry, not-for-profit organizations, and government.

These professionals develop, integrate, and provide practical knowledge about life skills— dietetics and nutrition, financial literacy; child care and parenting; conflict resolution; consumer education; safe and secure housing and environment; and apparel and textiles. For complete results and Quotes, please contact Linda Wilson using the contact information at the end of this release. Interviews with AAFCS teachers may be arranged through Linda Wilson or her staff.

Access the AAFCS Electronic Press Kit:

Contact Info:

Linda Wilson

400 N. Columbus Street, Suite 202

Alexandria, VA 22314


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