Kick the doldrums by incorporating heart-healthy snacks into your family’s eating plan. The American Heart Association helps make this simple and easy to do.
Get the Kids Involved
Turn off the TV and video games and start by creating your grocery list together. The American Heart Association’s free, online grocery list builder at heartcheckmark.org is a fun way you and your kids can use the computer to browse through more than 800 certified heart-healthy products. Find your favorite foods, then simply point, click, print- and shop!
At the grocery store, have the kids look for the American Heart Association’s red heart with a white check mark on food packages. It’s a familiar symbol that helps you quickly and confidently select foods that meet the Association’s criteria for heart-healthy levels of fat and cholesterol for healthy people over age 2.
Get Physically Active
In addition to snacking healthier, make physical activity a part of your family’s daily routine. Inactivity is a major culprit in the rising obesity rates among U.S. children, causing an increase in conditions that usually don’t develop until adulthood, such as high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol and type 2 diabetes.
You can help your children live healthier lives by following these simple tips from the American Heart Association:
• Set a good example by practicing your own heart-healthy habits, such as playing with your kids and eating sensibly. Keep your eyes on serving size!
• Limit television, movies, videos and computer games to less than two hours a day and substitute the rest of leisure time with physical activity.
• Give your children some household chores that require physical exertion such as mowing lawns, sweeping floors and taking out the garbage.
• Take advantage of your city’s recreation opportunities-from soccer leagues to fun runs and parks. Check out the various camps or organizations that sponsor outdoor activities such as camping, hiking trips and swimming.