Family Fitness CAN Be Fun

A family bike ride is a great way to spend time together while exercising.

Wellness, fitness, health, – no matter what the word is to describe ‘keeping your family healthy’, it is the one topic that is in the front of people’s mind.  There is discussion these days about children’s health and the public is starting to become more involved including parents, doctors and teachers. So how can you become fit?  Being fit is a way of saying a person eats well, gets a lot of physical activity and has a healthy weight.  

Parents have a huge impact on their children’s health. Some steps only parents can take like serving healthy meals, drinking milk with their meals or deciding to take a family bike ride. But kids can take charge, too, when it comes to health.

Instead of watching TV as a family bonding activity, think of fun and creative activities that will surely catch the interest of your young ones. For example, if you choose dancing as a weekend activity, have your children dress up in funny costumes they made themselves. You may also choose to get a pet to help your family do the exercise activity together. Getting involved with competitive sports activities like basketball or swimming is also a great way to boost your children’s interest in exercise.

Make nutritious food fun!

Eat a variety of nutrient rich food.  Nutrient-rich foods give you the most vitamins, minerals and other nutrients for the fewest calories. You may have a favorite food, but the best choice is to eat a variety. If you eat different foods, you’re more likely to get the nutrients your body needs. Taste new foods and old ones you haven’t tried for a while. Some foods, such as green veggies, are more pleasing the older you get. Listed our examples of nutrient rich foods:

  • Brightly colored fruits and 100% fruit juices
  • Vibrant colored vegetables and potatoes
  • Whole, fortified and fiber-rich grain foods
  • Low-fat and fat-free milk, cheese and yogurt
  • Lean meat, skinless poultry, fish, eggs, beans and nuts

 Kids can help make snacks and meals. Make the food fun so your child will keep interest in the project. Here is a fun snack idea that is also a great source of phosphorus, protein, thiamin and calcium:

 Ants Hiding in a Log from the Anteater

Ingredients:

  • 2 slices of enriched white or whole wheat bread
  • 4 Tbsp cream cheese, fat free, softened
  • ¼ cup raisins, unpacked (ants)

Instructions:

1.    Remove crusts from the bread.

2.    Spread half the cream cheese on each slice.

3.    Cut each slice into 3 strips (logs). 

4.    Place 15 – 20 raisins in a line on two strips. Stack the two strips together, cheese and “ants” side up.  Place the third strip on top, cheese side down, to form a triple-decker. Repeat with remaining bread strips and raisins to make another sandwich. You now have ants hiding in a log from the anteater. 

Eating right and being active does take time, but by leading a healthy lifestyle you are making your family a priority too!

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