September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month!

By Jacqueline Weiss, Cornell University, Nutrition Sciences Intern 
Reviewed by Katy Bowen, MS, RDN, LD, Director of Community Outreach, CHEF
Edited by Andi Champion, Program Coordinator, CHEF

September is National Childhood Obesity Awareness month. Obesity is a preventable and treatable health condition that increases the risk for other health problems such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and high blood pressure. As a parent, it is important to help your child learn healthy lifestyle habits that can help reduce their risk of childhood obesity.

We encourage you to dedicate this month to making small changes to improve the well-being of you and your family. Introduce new foods into your family’s diets, use herbs instead of sodium to boost the flavor in your meals, makeover your pantry so that you always have healthy staples on hand, enjoy a weekend at the farmer’s market where you can learn about eating seasonally, or add extra veggies to foods your family already loves.

Another small change that will make a positive impact on your health is increasing physical activity. It’s recommended that children and adolescents engage in at least 60 minutes of exercise per day. Try adding a family walk, a bike ride, or going to the park to your evening routine. Making your health a priority is the first step in helping your children form healthy habits for life.

To learn more about fighting obesity through nutrition and hands-on cooking, sign up for a CHEF class!