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March 26, 2010 - PRLog -- Nutrition
Nutrition (also called nourishment or aliment) is the provision, to cells and organisms, of the materials necessary (in the form of food) to support life. Many common health problems can be prevented or alleviated with good nutrition.
The diet of an organism refers to what it eats. Dietitians are health professionals who specialize in human nutrition, meal planning, economics, preparation, and so on. They are trained to provide safe, evidence-based dietary advice and management to individuals (in health and disease), as well as to institutions.

Poor diet can have an injurious impact on health, causing deficiency diseases such as scurvy, beriberi, and kwashiorkor; health-threatening conditions like obesity and metabolic syndrome, and such common chronic systemic diseases as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and osteoporosis.
Food choices and eating habits are learned from many sources. The school environment plays a significant role in teaching and modeling health behaviors. For some children, foods consumed at school can provide a major portion of their daily nutrient intake. Foods and beverages consumed at school can come from two major sources: (1) Federally funded programs that include the National School Lunch Program (NSLP), the School Breakfast Program (SBP), and after-school snacks and (2) competitive sources that include vending machines, "a la carte" sales in the school cafeteria, or school stores and snack bars.
Foods and beverages sold at school outside of the federally reimbursable school nutrition programs are referred to as competitive foods because they compete with the traditional school lunch as a nutrition source. There are important concerns about the contribution of nutrients and total calories from competitive foods to the daily diets of school-age children and adolescents.
Nutrition Standards for Foods in Schools offers both reviews and recommendations about appropriate nutrition standards and guidance for the sale, content, and consumption of foods and beverages at school, with attention given to foods and beverages offered in competition with federally reimbursable meals and snacks. It is sure to be an invaluable resource to parents, federal and state government agencies, educators and schools, health care professionals, food manufacturers, industry trade groups, media, and those involved in consumer advocacy.
What is physical activity?
Physical activity simply means movement of the body that uses energy. Walking, gardening, briskly pushing a baby stroller, climbing the stairs, playing soccer, or dancing the night away are all good examples of being active. For health benefits, physical activity should be moderate or vigorous and add up to at least 30 minutes a day.
Moderate physical activities include:
• Walking briskly (about 3 ½ miles per hour)
• Hiking
• Gardening/yard work
• Dancing
• Golf (walking and carrying clubs)
• Bicycling (less than 10 miles per hour)
• Weight training (general light workout)  Moderate physical activities include:
• Walking briskly (about 3 ½ miles per hour)
• Hiking
• Gardening/yard work
• Dancing
• Golf (walking and carrying clubs)
• Bicycling (less than 10 miles per hour)
• Weight training (general light workout)  

Action 1: Nutrition Competencies and Grade Level Expectations
Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten (DOC; 102KB; 7pp.)
Pre-Kindergarten and Kindergarten section of the Nutrition Competencies for Children.
Grades One through Three (DOC; 114KB; 7pp.) Grades 1 through 3 section of the Nutrition Competencies for Children.
Grades Four through Six (DOC; 101KB; 9pp.) Grades 4 through 6 section of the Nutrition Competencies for Children.
Middle School and High School (DOC; 109KB; 9pp.) Middle School and High School section of the Nutrition Competencies for Children.
Nutrition Tips
Tips for increasing physical activity
Make physical activity a regular part of the day
Choose activities that you enjoy and can do regularly. Fitting activity into a daily routine can be easy—such as taking a brisk 10 minute walk to and from the parking lot, bus stop, or subway station. Or, join an exercise class. Keep it interesting by trying something different on alternate days. What’s important is to be active most days of the week and make it part of daily routine. For example, to reach a 30-minute goal for the day, walk the dog for 10 minutes before and after work, and add a 10 minute walk at lunchtime. Or, swim 3 times a week and take a yoga class on the other days. Make sure to do at least 10 minutes of the activity at a time, shorter bursts of activity will not have the same health benefits. To be ready anytime, keep some comfortable clothes and a pair of walking or running shoes in the car and at the office.
More ways to increase physical activity
At home:
• Join a walking group in the neighborhood or at the local shopping mall. Recruit a partner for support and encouragement.
• Push the baby in a stroller.
• Get the whole family involved—enjoy an afternoon bike ride with your kids.
• Walk up and down the soccer or softball field sidelines while watching the kids play.
• Walk the dog—don’t just watch the dog walk.
• Clean the house or wash the car.
• Walk, skate, or cycle more, and drive less.
• Do stretches, exercises, or pedal a stationary bike while watching television.
• Mow the lawn with a push mower.
• Plant and care for a vegetable or flower garden
• Play with the kids—tumble in the leaves, build a snowman, splash in a puddle, or dance to favorite music.
At work:
• Get off the bus or subway one stop early and walk or skate the rest of the way.
• Replace a coffee break with a brisk 10-minute walk. Ask a friend to go with you.
• Take part in an exercise program at work or a nearby gym.
• Join the office softball or bowling team.

# # #

At play:
• Walk, jog, skate, or cycle.
• Swim or do water aerobics.
• Take a class in martial arts, dance, or yoga.
• Golf (pull cart or carry clubs).
• Canoe, row, or kayak.
• Play racket ball, tennis, or squash.
• Ski cross-country or downhill.
• Play basketball, softball, or soccer.
• Hand cycle or play wheelchair sports.
• Take a nature walk.
• Most important – have fun while being active!
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