Active dads cut risk of children growing up obese by a third

The Daily Mirror – Miriam Stoppard

Scientists, from Johns Hopkins and Harvard Schools, tracked 3,900 children in the US from the age of two until they turned four. Those whose fathers played with them regularly or took them outside were a third less likely to be obese at the age of four. And infants whose fathers took part in regular child care such as putting them to bed or giving them a bath were similarly less likely to be obese . So men can have a significant impact on the health of their child simply by playing an active role in their upbringing. I don’t think enough men know about this crucial aspect of fatherhood. (more)

Keeping kids active and healthy

The News Review – Trina Gwaltney

School is back in session, and parents across the Umpqua Valley juggle a full schedule of kids, school activities and work commitments. Many parents want to ensure that their kids stay healthy, active and eating well throughout the year while dealing with busy schedules. Help your kids be at their best, mentally and physically, by promoting at least an hour of daily physical play, as recommended by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. When you include kids in meal planning and encourage them to be active, you teach them healthy habits that will benefit them for years to come. (more)

Better sleep for your child

The Coeur d’Alene Press – Staff Writer

Most parents are aware of the importance of a nutritious diet and regular physical exercise for their children’s health, but surprisingly, another vital aspect of our physical and mental well-being is often overlooked: SLEEP. (more)

Preston: Get the kids moving; don’t call it exercise

The Sarasota Herald Tribune – Marilynn Preston

I grew up loving sports. I wish I could say the same for French or algebra. Early on, my folks stepped up to the plate and made sure my sister and I knew how to ride a bike, hit a ball, swim, bowl, roller skate, jump rope, ride a horse and play tennis, golf, even horse shoes. It never mattered that we weren’t the best. The message was: Have fun; learn something new; be a team player; don’t break anything. And now? Now I’m an active adult who loves to play and loves seeing children at play, because that’s how they develop their bodies, their minds, their focus, their imaginations, their sense of fun. (more)

Why your kids might be able to see better if they play outdoors more often

Medical X-Press – Karla Zadnik And Don Mutti

The ready availability of technology may make the children of today faster at configuring a new smartphone, but does all of that screen time affect the development of their eyes? While conventional wisdom dictates that children should do less up-close viewing, sit farther from the television and perhaps even wear their eyeglasses less, we have found in recent studies that another factor may be at play: Kids need to go outside, and, if not play, at least get some general exposure to outdoor light. To our surprise, more time outdoors had a protective effect and reduced the chances that a child would go on to need myopic refractive correction in the future. The size of the effect was impressive. (more)