MEND children’s ways with ten weeks of healthy family fun to fend off obesity

Daily Echo: MEND children’s ways with ten weeks of healthy family fun to fend off obesity MEND children’s ways with ten weeks of healthy family fun to fend off obesity

A scheme has been launched to help Hampshire families make a flab-fighting New Year’s resolution.

The MEND – or Mind, Exercise, Nutrition… Do It! – scheme provides ten weeks of fun, interactive group sessions for five to 13-year-olds to promote healthy lifestyles and address issues arising from being overweight.

This come as data from the National Child Measurement Programme show that in Hampshire one in five children in Year R are categorised as either overweight or obese. This figure rises to one in four for Year 6 children.

MEND will help families understand food labelling, different types of food, how much you need and fun ways to be active as a family.

County council bosses have teamed up with Sport Hampshire & Isle of Wight to organise the free sessions. Children can enjoy active play sessions as well as learn with their family about healthy food choices.

Parents will also be invited to discuss ways to help encourage behaviour change such as reducing the amount of time their children spend watching television, and positive goal setting and rewards.

One mum who knows the value of the programme is Rachel Fisk from Gosport. Rachel and her six-year-old daughter Lily attended sessions at Bridgemary School run by the Gosport School Sport Partnership.

She said: “Lily enjoyed taking part in the physical activities with other children and trying different healthy foods. It helped me as well.

“I know more about food, including what the power foods are and about exercises we can enjoy together.”

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