Even though the new school year is a few weeks away, the thoughts of a healthy lifestyle and fitness is a great way to answer the obesity dilemma by taking the proper steps in health, nutrition and physical fitness. There should be a combined effort that includes the home and school. The economy has depleted many physical education programs from the school’s curriculum. But, it will take more than recess to quell the rising obesity numbers that have cost the health care system billions of dollars.
That doesn’t mean that there is nothing to be done to prepare the students and their families from being health conscious, and being able to maintain a regimen of exercise and nutritional benefits. If your school has eliminated physical education, then a propitious recess program can help preserve the need for exercise and activities to promote a healthy lifestyle. The core subject teachers can ensure regulation minutes of exercise by establishing a walking program or a circuit approach of rope jumping, manipulatives, stretching and flexibilities, heart rate monitoring, and utilizing the various apps that log workouts. The key proponent is movement with less standing around.
The family can play an integral part of that carry over by instituting a fitness calendar to log workouts and tasks every day. The students can monitor their activity level every day and track their fitness levels. By using Internet sites and electronic devices, they will be able to evaluate their performances similar to a prescription or report card. In this way, they can try to beat a previous performance, and not worry about keeping up with set standards or competition with others. Families can work together and make it a fun atmosphere to instill physical fitness as a healthy choice.
A viable part of this process is being alert for nutritional choices both at school and at home. Many schools have developed healthy choices in the cafeteria that meet state guidelines. But, it will be a constant battle at home with the plethora of enticements from the media outlets and fast food establishments. Even though some burger chains have changed their menus and caloric intake, the ads still promote a super-sized version of items that will increase calories, along with waistlines that continues to keep the obesity epidemic as a hot topic and what to do about it.
Families can be vigilant of what is served in school cafeterias, and discuss the menus with the food representative. The menus are posted at school, newsletters, and newspapers for an opportunity to help families decide what meals make for healthy choices. There are a host of apps and Internet sites, such as Fooducate that aid in making healthy decisions. By typing in a product from the grocery store or scanning a bar code, the families can rate the value of the products, establish a meal plan and find recipes that provide information about nutritional choices.
By applying a daily workout schedule and keeping track of exercise through fitness calendars, and working together for planning healthy meals, families can implement a healthy lifestyle at school and at home. Schools that still have accredited health and physical programs can be contacted for exemplary ideas and activities that combine health, nutrition and fitness for a committed healthy lifestyle.