Healthy Community: increasing public awareness and engagement to decrease child obesity

Posted on January 18, 2017 at 10:40 PM by Jump IN for Healthy Kids

2016 Year in Review - part three in a series of four

Jump IN’s mission is to promote policies and practices that create healthy environments where families and children have real opportunities to make healthy choices and engage in healthy behaviors. Research shows that if healthy nutrition and physical activity policies can be implemented in the places where children and families spend most of their time, their health will likely improve.

In Part One of this Year in Review series we described what we did in 2016 to increase the number of healthy choices that family members have in their workplaces, schools, child care settings, and personal homes. In Part Two we described the launch of our first community demonstration project in Greater Lawrence/Far Eastside, a nationally recognized effort to employ numerous strategies across multiple sectors to increase health in a concentrated geographic region.

In this post we look at our 2016 efforts to engage and educate the larger community for the benefit of central Indiana families.

Healthy Community

Beyond their schools, child care centers, workplaces, homes, and neighborhoods, children and families are also members of a larger community whose values, norms, and policies shape the broader environment in which these families live. For that reason, Jump IN works to influence that environment by encouraging educational conversations on healthy habits, urging the adoption of targeted public policies that promote healthy living, and fostering an overall culture of good health in the community.

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Healthy Neighborhoods: addressing systemic issues that contribute to childhood obesity

Posted on January 12, 2017 at 12:31 AM by Jump IN for Healthy Kids

2016 Year in Review - part two in a series of four

Jump IN’s mission is to promote policies and practices that create healthy environments where families and children have real opportunities to make healthy choices and engage in healthy behaviors. Research shows that if healthy nutrition and physical activity policies can be implemented in the places where children and families spend most of their time, their health will likely improve.

In Part One of this Year In Review series, we described how we’re creating “Healthy Places” by improving the policies and practices at schools, child care centers, and worksites to promote better nutrition and physical activity. In this second segment, we look at our efforts to create "Healthy Neighborhoods" where families live, work, and play.

Healthy Neighborhoods

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a person’s zip code is more likely to determine their health status than their genetic code. A neighborhood’s “social determinants of health” – factors such as income, educational attainment, access to health care and other resources – directly impact the health status of the residents there.

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Healthy Places: embedding healthy nutrition and physical activity policies in everyday settings

Posted on January 6, 2017 at 6:00 AM by Jump IN for Healthy Kids

2016 Year in Review - part one in a series of four

The new year brings the opportunity to pause and reflect on 2016 and our progress in reducing the prevalence of childhood obesity. In this series of four Year in Review stories, we summarize some of our most significant accomplishments to date.

Healthy Places

Jump IN’s mission is to promote policies and practices that create healthy environments where families and children have real opportunities to make healthy choices and engage in healthy behaviors.Much of Jump IN’s work is grounded in this fact:

Changing the environment is the best way to change behaviors.

Research shows that if healthy nutrition and physical activity policies can be implemented in the places where children and families spend most of their time, their health will likely improve. Here’s how we helped schools, child care centers, worksites, and family homes embed healthy nutrition and physical activity policies and practices in 2016:

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Encourage active play every day

Posted on December 15, 2016 at 11:59 PM by Jump IN for Healthy Kids

Young children need lots of time to move their bodies—at home, at daycare, and in preschool. Movement helps children develop motor skills, which are important to all other areas of development—language, cognition, social, emotional, and adaptive skills. Children need encouragement, instruction, and opportunity to develop their motor skills. Help support this by practicing these tips. 

Teach your kids how to move

Movement skills don't always develop naturally. Try purposefully including movements such as the ones below in your play time with children:

  • Up to 1 year old: stretching, patting, grasping, releasing, creeping, crawling
  • 1 to 2 years old: clapping, grabbing, squeezing, pressing, stamping, pushing, pulling, jumping
  • 2 to 3 years old: twisting, balancing, waddling, climbing, marching, rolling, sliding, turning
  • 3 to 4 years old: hopping, tossing, galloping, jumping, slithering, darting, bouncing, trudging
  • 4 to 5 years old: tumbling, running, galloping, prancing, skipping, throwing, catching, tip-toeing, bending, stretching, collapsing, sneaking, trotting, kicking, batting

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Exploring the Role of the Business Community in Improving Health

Posted on December 6, 2016 at 10:17 PM by Jump IN for Healthy Kids

How can employers—who bear about half of the health care costs in the U.S.—improve physical activity among individuals?

Jump IN for Healthy Kids CEO Ron Gifford joins Jim Huffman, Senior Vice President of Global Benefits at Bank of America Corporation, and Ron Goetzel, PhD, Senior Scientist and Director of the Institute for Health and Productivity Studies at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, along with moderator Janet Marchibroda, Director of Health Innovation at the Bipartisan Policy Center, for a panel discussion in Washington, D.C., on Friday, December 9, 10:00 – 11:00 a.m.

Explore employer strategies that promote physical activity within their organizations and communities. Hear about key findings from a physical activity challenge conducted by BPC’s CEO Council on Health and Innovation.

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30 Easy, healthy snack ideas for kids

Posted on November 30, 2016 at 10:33 PM by Jump IN for Healthy Kids

If you are looking for easy, healthy snack ideas that will appeal to kids and adults alike, you've come to the right place. Here are 30 no-prep and low-prep snack ideas to inspire you.

No Prep Snacks

  • Whole fruit: grapes, apples, bananas, etc.
  • Fruit salad: unsweetened canned fruit, snack cup, or do-it-yourself by mixing 1/2 cup of bite-sized fresh fruit (pineapple, melon, and berries, for example)
  • Frozen fruit: 1/2 cup of berries, melon, etc.
  • Dried fruit: 1/3 cup of raisins, dried apricots, etc.
  • Applesauce: 1 snack cup (unsweetened)
  • Nuts: 1/3 cup of almonds, peanuts, cashews, or mixed nuts
  • Cheese: low fat string cheese, or 2 slices low fat cheese (such as Cabot Creamery)
  • Yogurt: 1 sqeezeable low fat yogurt (such as Stonyfield Farm, Chobani), or 1 low fat yogurt container (6 oz)
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15 Tips: How to eat more vegetables and fruits

Posted on November 23, 2016 at 11:55 PM by Jump IN for Healthy Kids

Eating healthy means striving to eat at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables every day. Here are 15 tips for eating more vegetables and fruits, without necessarily giving up other favorite foods.

  1. Keep chopped veggies in the fridge for snacks.
  2. Buy individually sized fruit servings (fruit cups, applesauce, sliced apples).
  3. Top any cereal with fruit.
  4. Add handfuls of frozen veggies to soups or noodles.
  5. Use yogurt as a dip with fresh fruit.
  6. Use low fat ranch dressing as a dip for veggies.
  7. Stuff celery with cream cheese or peanut butter.
  8. Make a fruit or veggie shish kebab.
  9. Add grapes or sliced apples to chicken salad.
  10. Stuff an omelet with diced tomatoes, spinach, or onions.
  11. Add berries or bananas to pancake batter.
  12. Fill half a cantaloupe with low fat cottage cheese.
  13. Choose dried fruit as a treat, rather than candy or cookies.
  14. Serve fresh fruit with cheese wedges as dessert.
  15. Grill skewers of pineapple, zucchini, tomatoes, and peppers.

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Brain boosts: active ways to improve student achievement

Posted on November 16, 2016 at 11:58 PM by Jump IN for Healthy Kids

 

When you think about ways to improve student achievement, does providing students with physical activity come to mind? It should. Active students have better concentration, fewer behavior problems, and higher performance on reading, writing, and math tests.  

 Image from Active Living Research’s “Active Education: Growing Evidence on Physical Activity and Academic Performance,” based on research by Dr. Charles Hillman, University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign

These two brain images, taken from the top of the head, represent the average amount of students’ neural activity during a test following sitting and walking for 20 minutes. The color blue represents lower neural activity, while the color red denotes higher brain activity in a given region. So students who walked prior to the test showed more brain activity.

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Trends in physical education: active students, lifetime fitness

Posted on November 9, 2016 at 11:45 PM by Jump IN for Healthy Kids

Studies show that too many students spend too much time standing around in P.E. class. Innovative P.E. instructors are changing their curriculum to keep students active:

  • Less emphasis on competitive team sports
  • More emphasis on fun and lifetime fitness skills
  • More focus on engaging all students, regardless of athletic ability
  • Increased tracking of individual physical fitness with digital tools like FitnessGram

This isn’t your parents’ P.E. class. Trends in physical education include replacing rope climbs and kickball with:

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School recess is critical to student learning, school wellness

Posted on November 2, 2016 at 10:39 PM by Jump IN for Healthy Kids

School recess is a highly effective strategy for increasing physical activity among children, because it is a strategy that can reach every student every day. Because of that, all schools should adopt a “No Lost Recess” policy as part of their school wellness plans.

Here’s an example from one school’s recess policy:

  • A minimum of 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity shall be provided by schools for all K-8 students daily. This requirement can be achieved through activities such as recess, dance, classroom energizers, or other curriculum-based physical activity programs. However, this time should complement and not substitute for the physical education program.
  • Structured/unstructured recess and other physical activity (such as, but not limited to, physical activity time, physical education, or intramurals) shall not be taken away from students as a form of punishment. In addition, severe and inappropriate exercise may not be used as a form of punishment for students.

Recess helps a child’s ability to process information, pay attention, and remain on-task, so it should not be taken away as 
a punishment for unwanted behavior or unfinished class work. In fact, the longer the stretch between recess breaks at school, the higher the inattentiveness among students.

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