Submitted by Alexia Vega, Community Health Educator
2020 showed us all that there is no better time to focus on your family’s health and wellbeing. The pandemic caused for gym closures, inactivity, overeating, and studies have also shown that it has negatively affected children’s mental health. On this Family Health and Fitness Day (June 12) we want to recognize the importance of taking an active role in adopting healthy behaviors and creating routines to help improve your family’s overall wellbeing.
Physical Activity ISN’T only Physical!
Physical activity will not only help children and adolescents physically – improving cardiovascular fitness, building strong bones and muscles – but mentally as well by reducing symptoms of anxiety and depression. Working together as a family can help increase motivation and the want to make changes.
Eat well, be well
I am sure we have all heard the phrase “Eat well, be well”, and that’s exactly right! How we fuel our body has a huge impact on how we feel. If I fuel up on simple sugars, I will likely suffer from a crash and low energy throughout the day. This can cause my brain to be hazy and feel moody. On the contrary, if I have a healthy nutrient dense meal, it can help me feel energized, boost my mood, and help me focus. It is essential that children also recognize the importance of eating nutritious foods and are encouraged to play an active role on choosing healthier options.
Here are some tips to start your family on the right track:
- Incorporate vegetables in your morning routine
- Bring the kids to the grocery store to help them understand their options
- Go outside, play a sport, or go on family walks
- Schedule a technology free hour or two
- Go on a hike
- Visit a farmers’ market and allow kids to choose their fruits and vegetables
- Start a family garden
Find out more about the importance of children’s mental health here.
Read on about the benefits of physical activity here.