Summer is meant for fun and being outside. But when you need a game for that ride in the car or a rainy day, choose games that continue to build your child’s nutrition knowledge and skills when school is out.
http://www.choosemyplate.gov/kids/ and it has plenty to offer! There is a games page where your child can find online games that teach them about making healthy food choices. "Smash Your Food," one of the games on this page, is also a free mobile app for the iPad, iPhone and iPod.
Another online game is "Pick Chow" at http://www.zisboombah.com/pickchow. You choose foods to add to your plate and you see the protein, carbs, fat, fiber, sugar, saturated fat and sodium amounts change as foods are added. Your meal also gets a rating.
Two free mobile apps that can also help your child track what foods they eat are "Max’s Plate" and "Count Your Peas."
Being physically active is also an important part of good health. A free mobile app “Eat-And-Move-O-Matic” shows how to balance the calories from food choices with calories burned in physical activity.
And, parents, you may enjoy playing some of these games too. Play them with your kids so you have a chance to talk about making healthy food choices and being active.
So, this summer let the games begin!
Contributor: Ellen Schuster, M.S., R.D., Associate State Specialist, University of Missouri Extension, email@example.com, 573-882-1933