In an effort to stem the rise in childhood obesity, the Center for Nutrition and Activity Promotion at Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital has partnered with Kohl's Department Store to create Kohl's Healthy Choices for Healthy Families.
Kohl's Department Store, through the Kohl's Cares® program, has provided more than $530,000 to Penn State Hershey Children's Hospital since 2006 to educate youth and families about the importance of eating healthy and engaging in regular physical activity.
Kohl's Healthy Choices for Healthy Families teaches children and their parents about energy balance, a simple process of how our bodies use food for energy and burn it off. Being in energy balance most days will help prevent overweight and obesity.
By promoting a central health message – nrgBalance 12345! – families can learn tips and resources for achieving five, daily recommendations for preventing childhood obesity: one or more hours of physical activity, two or less hours of screen time, three balanced meals, four or more cups of water or other low/no-calorie beverages, and five servings of fruits and vegetables.
Physical activity is anything that gets your body moving. Keep TV and computer time to less than two hours each day, and choose to move instead!
Find ways to be active for at least one hour a day that are fun for you – at home, with family or friends, or out and about.
Get started today by viewing the family-friendly exercise DVD: Healthy Moves (coming soon)
Keep a family activity log (PDF). Post it on the refrigerator and encourage everyone in the family to use it. Recognize the person who achieves their daily activity time.
Remember: the key to staying active on a regular basis is to have fun and be safe (PDF). For additional recommendations and resources on physical activity levels for you and your family, visit http://www.health.gov/paguidelines/factsheetprof.aspx.
Post a Screen-Time Chart (PDF) in a central area for everyone to plan their activities and track their screen time hours. Reward the person who sticks to two hours or less each day.
To build a balanced meal (PDF) try to include a food from every food group.
Children who eat breakfast have better overall nutrition, energy, and brain function; get sick less often; and have better general health. Power up with breakfast every day (PDF).
Know the facts - it's important to turn the package over or around and review the Nutrition Facts label. Learn how to read a Nutrition Facts label (PDF).
Keep an eye on portion sizes (PDF) – in the last 20 years, our portion sizes have gotten much bigger. In fact, larger portions make it easier to overeat or consume more energy than your body needs. A single meal can contain a whole day's worth of calories.
Use this guide for measuring proper portion size (coming soon)
Healthy Family Recipes – preparing well-balanced meals and healthy snacks for the entire family may seem overwhelming. But with a little pre-planning (perhaps a weekend afternoon), the whole family can get involved in determining the menu for the following week. Use the following resources below to get started:
Plan and track family meals (PDF) on a chart. Reward the entire family with a special meal or active outing when you meet your weekly goal.
Drink at least four cups of water or other low/no-calorie beverages each day. Avoid energy drinks and sugar-sweetened beverages like soda, sweet tea or fruit-flavored drinks. Drink sports drinks ONLY when you've been exercising intensely for 90 minutes or more.
Track your family's intake (PDF) of low/no-calorie beverages.
Fruits and vegetables are nature's fast food. Get at least five servings a day to keep you healthy.
The following resources provide information on ways you and your family can eat more fruits and vegetables every day:
As a family, track your fruit and veggie consumption (PDF) together. Create a chart and place it in a central location and challenge everyone to fill it out.
Family Calendar: Daily Nutrition & Exercise Guide
The Family Calendar is designed to help families achieve a goal of living a healthy lifestyle by eating right and staying fit. Each month features healthy recipes with nutrition facts, portion control, exercise guidelines, daily nutrition and exercise ideas for the entire family, food and activities journal, and weekly menu planner.