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Child-care facilities can do more to promote healthy eating and physical activity among preschoolers
Date:8/25/2011

ons have been designed to address these concerns, only 2 interventions showed evidence of success in reducing risk for obesity among child participants.

In an accompanying commentary, Margaret Briley. PhD, RD, LD, and Michael McAllaster, both of the Department of Nutritional Sciences, The University of Texas at Austin, discuss some of the nutritional guidelines available to the child-care provider. They note that child-care centers receiving funding from the Child and Adult Food Care Program (CACFP) must follow CACFP guidelines for healthy foods and snacks, but that those guidelines may differ from recommendations from professional associations such as the American Pediatric Association or the American Dietetic Association. Nevertheless, they recognize that the child-care setting can play an important role in encouraging healthy eating habits.

According to Briley and McAllaster, "In the past 3 decades, child-care centers have replaced the family table as the learning environment for young children's food habits.America is facing the reality that many children younger than 5 years can be classified as obese or overweight. Research has found that one in three children under 5 in low income families is obese or overweight. The greatest impact on obesity can be made among this population and assure that the next generations have eating and exercise habits that support a life of good health as well as reduced medical costs. Parents must become advocates for their children's food intake and support policy changes that strengthen nutrition programs that will enable all children to eat nutritious meals and snacks that support a lifetime of good health."


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Contact: Eileen Leahy
adajmedia@elsevier.com
732-238-3628
Elsevier Health Sciences
Source:Eurekalert

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