It saddens me to think that last month we had to celebrate that the obesity rate for preschoolers had declined by a percentage point in five states. The reality is that we still can say one out of eight preschoolers is obese.

Now that I’m a parent, I’m more aware of these trends than ever. I agree with our expert Josh that it is important to model healthy behavior, both in nutrition and activity, for our son. I can only hope that he enjoys sports and dance as much as my husband and I do. And perhaps we’ll find a way to celebrate this “holiday” when he’s a little older.

Celebrating Family Health and Fitness Day

with advice from Josh McDonald, OTR/L, MS
and Mark Salandra, CSCS

Americans young and old have been gaining weight and slowing down. A report on physical activity and health from the U.S. Surgeon General’s office in the late 1990s found that “nearly half of young people aged 12-21 are not vigorously active on a regular basis” and that more than 60% of adults aren’t as active as they should be.

(A more recent study in 2010 didn’t show any improvement, finding that only 15% of high school students achieve the recommendations set by the CDC for physical activity.)

These findings led to the creation of Family Health and Fitness Day on September 28, a celebration marking its 17th year in 2013 that celebrates activity for the whole family.

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