Nutrition: 5-2-1-0 Program

“5-2-1-0 Healthy” is a public education campaign helping families, schools, communities and physicians to raise awareness of nutritional and physical activity daily guidelines. Its straightforward message represents important steps that you and your families can take to prevent childhood obesity:

What Does 5-2-1-0 Healthy Mean?

This easy to remember message stands for the following healthy habits:

5              Eating fruits and vegetables at least 5 times a day. Limit 100% fruit juice.

2              Cutting screen time to 2 hours or less a day.

1              Participating in at least one hour of moderate to vigorous physical activity every day.

0              Restricting soda and sugar-sweetened sports and fruit drinks. Drink water and 3-4 servings/day of fat-free/skim or 1% milk.

Helping Your Kids Learn Healthy Habits

As a gentle reminder, put this article on your fridge. Take a few minutes each week to sit down and talk about it with your children to help them become more aware of their eating and exercise habits. Take the snack lists below with you on grocery shopping trips.

No Prep “One Serving” Snacks

  • Whole fruits
  • Fruit salad: 1/2 cup store-bought, fresh fruit, unsweetened canned fruit, or snack cup
  • Apple sauce: 1 snack cup (unsweetened)
  • Nuts: 1/3 cup of nuts such as almonds, peanuts, cashews, or mixed nuts
  • Cheese: Low fat string cheese, or 2 slices low fat cheese
  • Granola/Fruit bar: 1 low fat, whole grain bar
  • Cereal: 1 cup whole grain cereal (unsweetened)
  • Fruit smoothies: Store-bought or homemade with fresh or frozen fruit and low fat milk or yogurt

Weekend & Evening Snacks (Some Prep)

  • Veggies & dip such as baby carrots, red pepper slices, chopped broccoli, or cherry tomatoes served with hummus, low fat salad dressing, or other low fat dip
  • Snack kabobs: veggie or fruit chunks skewered onto thin pretzel sticks
  • Sweet potato fries: baked sweet potato wedges, tossed lightly with olive oil and salt
  • Low fat cottage cheese or yogurt with fruit and/or granola
  • Homemade Popsicles: made with 100% fruit juice or low fat yogurt
  • Taco roll-up: small whole wheat tortilla rolled w/low fat cheese, beans and salsa
  • Mini pizzas: toast pita bread or half of a whole wheat English muffin w/tomato sauce, cheese, and chopped vegetables
  • Mini bagel with spread with 1 tablespoon light cream cheese, peanut butter, or hummus

Rewards & Celebrating a Job Well Done

Sometimes we’re tempted to reward good behavior with food. While your kids may enjoy this, invite them to suggest alternative rewards that are not food based. As you come up with ideas, create a list of inexpensive rewards and post it where the whole family can see it. You can also put together a separate list of special rewards to recognize fabulous achievements.

Potential “Healthy Habit” Rewards

  • Give certificates or ribbons for healthy behaviors.
  • Allow your child to have a few friends over after school to play sports.
  • Invite a few of their friends to a sleepover.
  • Have a family game night.
  • Keep a box of special toys or art supplies that can only be used on special occasions.
  • Attend a sports game.
  • Camp out in the back yard.
  • Encourage the use of electronics that support physical activity, like Dance Dance Revolution.
  • Choose toys and games that promote physical activity like jump ropes, balls, or Skip-Its.

It takes time for eating and exercise habits to change and “stick.” Encouraging your kids to make those changes week by week with healthy snacks, gentle reminders and appropriate rewards, will help you and your family create your own ways of becoming healthier.

> More information about the Nutrition: 5-2-1-0 Program

If you have any questions about the Nutrition 5-2-1-0 program or anything else relating to your kids’ health please Contact Us  (859-525-8181) Today!