I applaud Mrs. Obama’s efforts to fight childhood obesity. But we should not lose site of the fact that many of us share the blame for our kid’s poor eating and exercise habits. Yes there is shameful, clever, manipulating marketing out there that sways behavior. But kids first look to their parents as a role model. So look at the platform of “Let’s Move” and see how you can adopt it for yourself.
Healthy Choices – making healthy food choices by empowering yourself. Read and understand food labels. The administration is working with the FDA to make these more consumer friendly. They’re not just for your kids but you too. As part of this initiative, the US Department of Agriculture plans to revamp the food pyramid symbol and online interactive tools.
Physical Activity – According to the web site set up for this campaign, “Children need 60 minutes of active and vigorous play every day to grow up to a healthy weight. Consider that 8-18 year-olds devote an average of 7 å_ hours to using entertainment media including TV, computers, video games, cell phones and movies.”
So look at your day. Do you take a walk at lunch, use the stairs instead of the elevator, exercise in the morning, at lunch or after work? Hmmm. And kids aren’t the only ones watching too much TV, playing on Facebook, etc.
Accessible and Affordable Healthy Food – this from the web site – “More than 23 million Americans, including 6.5 million children, live in low-income urban and rural neighborhoods that are more than a mile from a supermarket. These communities, where access to affordable, quality, and nutritious foods is limited, are known as food deserts. By using the new interactive Food Environment Atlas, users can see the location of food deserts across the country and other indicators of how successful communities are in accessing healthy food.”
I would venture that many of those reading this blog are not in food deserts and have access to healthy food.
Any way you cut it, kids model what their parents do. And boomers and seniors are plagued with multiple chronic conditions that stem from their own bad behaviors that yes probably started when they were kids. But you are never old to change. Or set an example for someone else.
So everyone, “Let’s Move.”