Often at health fairs people don't want to stop or stay long at nutrition displays because we're not providing any type of screening, nor giving out candy!
So, we came up with the idea of having a mini-exercise course at children's health fairs. We chose 3 activities: jump rope, hula hoop, and an exercise wheel which each child spins to determine the 3rd exercise (choices are 5 jumping jacks, running in place for 10 seconds, touch toes 5 times, etc.). Upon completing the "course" we award them a pretty certificate which says Congratulations! You have successfully begun to be more active, with location, date and an exercise graphic printed on it. The children loved it and we had them standing in line to take their turn. So, while they are waiting their turn, we talk about our healthy foods display.
Peggy M. Walker, MS, RD, LD
Nutrition & Food Safety Area Agent
MississippiStateUniversity Extension Service
School wellness idea
Ann A. Hertzler, Ph D, RD, LDN, noted that it is now the 400 year anniversary since Jamestown. She came up with some fun school wellness activities for nutrition and food:
• Find children’s books about water, food, and nutrition focusing on Indians, English settlers, and other Culturally Diverse groups. Include info from www.choosemyplate.gov. Children can read books about families, the food they eat, where food comes from.
Compare similarities and differences from then and now.
• Scurvy was the disease of sailors and explorers who lacked fruits and vegetables in their diets for months on end. In the 1700s, James Lind discovered limes prevented scurvy; in the 1900s, scientists discovered Vitamin C in fruits and vegetables prevented scurvy. Read about early explorers & disease. Read books about dark green (spinach, broccoli) and orange vegetables (carrots, squash, sweet potatoes) and fruits that the Indians and English settlers ate in Jamestown. Name vegetables and fruits: tell colors, shapes, and textures; and how they grow. Explain that the nutrition-related diseases we have now are more related to excess intake of calories and lack of exercise: heart disease, diabetes, obesity and cancer.
• Ask what fruits and vegetables“early families” ate? Do you eat these foods? Here are some recipes:
Salad Recipe: With clean hands, wash greens; break, tear and toss in a salad.
Recipe: Berry Berry Smoothie - Combine 1 part berries, 1 part chilled vanilla yogurt, and 1 part mashed banana. Mix together.
Recipe: Orange Pieces. Peel skin from an orange. Pull the sections apart. Eat as a snack.
Recipe: Squash or sweet potatoes. Children scrub; bake in the microwave. Adult supervision required. Talk about how these were baked in the hearth in the early days.
Judy’s passion for cooking began with helping her grandmother make raisin oatmeal for breakfast. From there she earned her first food service job at 15, was accepted to the world famous Culinary Institute of America at 18 (where she graduated second in her class), and went on to the Fachschule Richemont in Switzerland where she focused on pastry arts and baking. But after learning that the quality of a croissant directly varies with how much butter it has, Judy sought to challenge herself by coming up with recipes that were as healthy as they were tasty.
Judy received The Culinary Institute of America’s Pro Chef II certification, the American Culinary Federation Bronze Medal, Gold Medal, and ACF Chef of the Year. Her enthusiasm for eating nutritiously and deliciously leads her to constantly innovate and use the latest in nutritional science to guide her creativity, from putting new twists on fajitas to adapting Italian brownies to include ingredients like toasted nuts and cooked honey. Judy’s publishing company, Food and Health Communications, is dedicated to her vision that everyone can make food that tastes as good as it is for you.