Here are five ideas for to help you and your family get fit and stay fit together.
Family Health & Fitness Day USA is a national health and fitness event for families, set for Saturday, September 27. (Always on the last Saturday in September.) The event's purpose is to promote family involvement in physical activity, but you don’t have to wait for a formal event to get your family moving in a healthy direction.
Here are five ideas for to help you and your family get fit and stay fit together.
Check out those peepers!
August is Children's Eye Health and Safety Month so before school starts, take some time to get your child's eyes checked.
Most children have healthy eyes, but there are conditions that can threaten good vision. Because you can't always “see” eye health problems, set up some time today for an eye exam.
Have your child's eyes examined during regular pediatric appointments.
Vision testing should start around age three.
Here are a few signs to look out for that could mean you child has vision problems.
More than 12 million children suffer from vision impairment, and eye injuries are one of the leading causes of vision loss in children. There are an estimated 42,000 sports-related eye injuries each year and the majority of them happen to children.
Use this month to discuss the importance of eye safety with your children.
To find more information about children's eye health and safety visit: www.preventblindness.org.
The school year is about to begin and soon the lazy, carefree days of summer will be replaced with homework and after-school activities. Getting back into a regular schedule can be difficult for both parents and children alike.
Here are a few tips to help you get back into the swing of things a bit more smoothly.
1. Reestablish mealtime / bedtime schedules
You may have been a bit lax during the summer about when your children went to bed and what time they ate, but the key to your child's success at school is dependent on getting plenty of sleep and proper nutrition.
2. Designate a place to do homework
Make sure your child has ample workspace to complete their homework. Proper lighting is important, as is having a quiet place to study.
3. Shut off electronics
When school is in session, and even on breaks, limit your child's use of electronics. During the summer it's easy to let your child play video games and watch TV a little longer or more frequently. Start cutting back now so the transition won't be a total shock for your child.
4. Good physical and mental health
Scheduling physician visits, eye exams, and dental checkups early in the school year is a great way to help you remember when your child's last check up was.
5. Buy school supplies / clothes early
You don't need to spend a lot of money getting back to school supplies and attire, but know that the closer it gets to the start of school, the less options you'll have.
All in all the start of school can be an exciting time to change things up and get focused again. It can also be a stressful and rushed time of year, but with a little effort and planning, you'll ace the start of the school year. No problem.
Give Soccer a Shot
If you're looking for an extracurricular activity for your child, you might want to take a shot at soccer.
There are several health benefits to playing soccer. The first, naturally, is the physical fitness aspect of the game.
Playing soccer helps develop stamina and endurance because players sprint after the ball and are in a regular state of movement up and down the field for long periods of time.
Dribbling, kicking, and passing the ball help develop agility and coordination.
Soccer can teach your child discipline. Things like not being able to touch the ball with your hands, unless you're the goalie, and keeping your feet on the ground to throw the ball in from out of bounds are subtle lessons to help your child learn and develop naturally.
Soccer can also help boost confidence and encourage peer interaction by teaching children how to be part of a team. It's fairly easy to learn the basics, and children of all ages and physical capabilities can play.
Soccer is offered almost year round in most communities, and a lot of organizations have indoor facilities for when the weather gets too cold.
If you're looking to get your child into a new extracurricular activity why not give soccer a try? It's a developmentally and physically active game that's fun and easy to play.
Want more soccer action?
If you live in or around Oklahoma City, add to the excitement of this growing sport by checking out our new professional soccer team, The OKC Energy.
When it comes to holidays there are few as unhealthy and glutonous as Halloween, but Easter is definitely one of them.
It's not uncommon for people to stuff Easter baskets with unhealthy items that can linger long after the holiday has passed. To help you avoid unhealthy Easter baskets here are a few things you can substitute that will still make the holiday fun, just not hazardous to your health.
1. Fruit snacks
Instead of tons of chocolate and treats, go for healthy fruit snacks instead.
2. Chocolate-dipped fruit
If you need your choclate fix, try dipping fruits like strawberries into chocolate instead. You'll get the fix for your sweet tooth but you won't overindulge, which is always a good thing.
Instead of going with sweets, try adding in games for a more social Easter. Cards, puzzles, and the like all make excellent additions to Easter baskets.
4. Stickers and Fake Tattoos
Instead of candy, try putting in stickers or temporary tattoos for that personal touch to Easter baskets.
5. Individually-wrapped Treats
If you just have to have your candy fix this Easter, be mindful of your portions.
Instead of going for large bags of candy, try opting for indvidually-wrapped candy instead. This can decrease the tendency to grab large handfuls and shovel them into your mouth.
This Easter be more mindful of the treats you place in your loved one's basket. If you swap out the treats for interactive games and fun trinkets, you'll be better able to ward off the excessive delicious candies that have become associated with the Easter holiday.
Getting Kids to Eat Healthy
Getting kids to eat healthy can be an arduous task. As much as it would be easier to let them eat whatever they want, parents must help their children form healthy eating habits that they can take with them into adulthood.
If you’re having a hard time getting your child to eat healthy, here are a few tricks to help them get the taste of good food without them even realizing it.
1. Set by example
If you want your child to eat healthy, good-for-them food, then it helps if you eat healthy, good-for-you foods, too. By setting a good example, you’re more likely to succeed at getting them to eat healthier.
2. Let them choose
Even if you eat healthy, it’s not guaranteed that your children will follow suit. If you’re having trouble getting your child to eat fruits and veggies for snacks and at meals, try getting them involved with the food.
Take them with you to the grocery store and let them pick out the fruits and veggies they’ll eat. Kids are more likely to eat food they picked out. Sure, they might dig their heels in at first, but if you keep at it they will eventually pick out something they can “bear” to eat.
Once you get them engaged at the grocery store, you’ve increased your chance for success at the dinner table.
3. Get them involved in cooking
Letting your child help prepare the meals is a great way to get them involved in eating healthier.
Mixing salads, peeling fruit, adding in veggies to pasta and the like are all great ways to make eating fruits and vegetables fun. Plus, it teaches them how to cook, which is a valuable skill they can use their entire life.
4. Make it taste good
If eating healthy always tasted good, there would be no issues, but compared with unhealthy treats eating vegetables can be blah, especially for a kid. Try jazzing up your meals to make it more fun.
If your child doesn’t like vegetables, try adding in some low-fat dips for carrots or nut butter for celery. The dipping can be a great way to jazz up raw vegetables.
Pizzas and quesadillas with broccoli and other vegetables can be a great menu items to sneak in the good stuff while making the event a fun family activity.
Think interaction with your child. Making egg rolls, hard-boiled eggs you can draw faces on, and breakfast items like pancakes with fresh fruit or scrambled eggs with tomato and mushroom are great ways to get your child cooking and eating healthier without them even knowing it's good for them.
5. Allow treats
All work and no play makes eating healthy a boring task to accomplish. As much as children need routine and schedules when it comes to creating healthy eating habits, they also need to be rewarded.
Instead of making treats an everyday habit or going to the extreme and outlawing treats altogether, try finding a comfortable place in between.
Using treats as a reward system or for special occasions can teach your child the importance of moderation with eating habits.
The important thing to remember when trying to get your child to eat healthy is you have to be consistent but you have to make it fun. If you make it fun then meal times can be one of the easiest, most enjoyable parts of your day.
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