Know Food Now 5 Early Interventions To Change Childhood Eating Patterns | Know Food Now

Saturday, June 11, 2011

5 Early Interventions To Change Childhood Eating Patterns

Surprise!  I actually like something our government is doing.  Especially Michelle Obama's initiative and action surrounding  Let's Move Childcare.

The First Lady, in remarks made June 8, 2011, at the CentroNia Child Care Center in Washington, D.C., sites statistics from Kathleen Sebelius that half of obese children are overweight before the age of two and some three year olds exhibit early warning signs of heart disease. And the number of obese children is on the rise. Deplorable, alarming, sad, and a drain on resources down the road, early intervention to change childhood eating patterns is the one place where government action may save money.

The proposed 5 step plan does not require additional funding for child care centers. There is significant support and the Department of Defense, Head Start, the General Services Administration, and Bright Horizons have their numerous facilities on board. The simple steps to follow are:
  1. One to two hours of physical activity.
  2. Turn off the TV.
  3. Serve a fruit or vegetable at every meal.
  4. Serve only water, low fat milk, or 100% juice.
  5. Support mother's who choose to breast feed.

One disconnect may be the parents. Any program for behavior change in children, requires that parents also follow the program to set a good example. Since there are more obese adults than children, good examples may be hard to find.  Mrs. Obama hopes the very young will become leaders in their homes and request their parents buy healthy food, but that sounds utopian.  Eating habits are among the hardest to break.

The behavior of children is also being discounted. The terrible two's are real and so are stubborn children at every age who are picky eaters and like their TV.  Maybe the interventions should start in the womb.

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