Stay healthy with 5-2-1-0!

This catchy string of numbers guides healthy eating and activity habits.  Maine launched the 5-2-1-0 idea as part of their Let’s Go! state-wide campaign.  With the growing pediatric obesity rate, the campaign quickly grew into a national favorite, adopted by many schools, daycare centers & physician offices. Have you spotted these numbers in your child’s pediatrician’s office or the school’s cafeteria?

What do these numbers mean?

5 – Eat 5 fruits and vegetables a day

2 – No more than 2 hours of screen time a day

1 – Be active for 1 hour every day

0 –   Zero sugary drinks; drink skim or low fat milk and more water

How can we apply 5-2-1-0 in our homes?

5 – Set out a bowl or platter of fresh fruit and veggies (plain or with low fat dip) for snacking; start the day with a fruit and/or vegetable at breakfast; have fruit and 1-2 vegetables for lunch and dinner

2 – Reinforce structure around the TV and electronics.  Encourage play time outside and when inside, board games and reading

1 – Break up the hour: consider 3-20 minute fun activities during the day; include their gym class or recess time; check out ways to keep kids active in the winter

0 – Encourage water between meals; flavor water with sugar free packets, 100% fruit juice or lemon/orange slice; reduce to half sugary beverage intake as a first step when transitioning to zero

5-2-1-0 creates awareness and is simple to understand and apply to our daily lives. It may be a fun guide, too, in keeping your family’s health status in check!

Want more? Check out Get UP! Montgomery County at http://getupmc.org/

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We have created this blog as a way to communicate key childrens' health and safety issues to parents and other child advocates. It is managed by Dayton Children's department of marketing communications. Comments can be sent to rodneyg@childrensdayton.org.

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