How to Get Your Family Active & Healthy
Evergreen Rehab & Wellness wishes everyone a safe, healthy, and happy Family Day!
This third Monday of February (February 21st) is the BC Family Day, one of the provincial statutory holidays. It is one of the best times to spend time with our families.
The BC government provides free family activities. They have funded free virtual and in-person Family Day activities over the Family Day weekend.
To join the Family Day celebration, we have prepared some tips to keep your family active and healthy. These tips are not only applicable during this Family Day, but you can use them all year round.
Let us be active and healthy this 2022!
6 Ways on How to Keep Your Family Active & Healthy
1. Exercise Together
Make time to exercise together as a family. It is going to be a fun activity. By exercising together, you encourage teamwork and achieving a common goal as a family. This activity can also help to strengthen your family bond and ties.
You can search for some easy exercises online. Choose exercises that are safe for everyone.
Start with a warm-up exercise and end with a cool-down exercise to avoid injury. Moreover, you can start exercising at a slow pace. Moreover, as a parent, encourage them to follow your steps.
It can be a slow jog together or walking together. In addition, you may take your dogs while doing a walk or jog.
Other exercises that you can try with your kids are:
- Crab Walk
- Bear Crawl
Family exercise can be both fun and a good opportunity to bond.
2. Eat Healthy Meals
How to Eat Healthily?
- Have plenty of vegetables and fruits in your meals. It is best to choose different textures, colours, and shapes. Moreover, dietitians recommend trying making half of your plate with vegetables and fruits.
- It is best to choose whole-grain foods than refined grains. Whole grain contains all parts of grain, which is much more nutritious than refined grains. So, choose whole-grain foods such as pasta, bread, brown rice, wild rice, or quinoa.
- Eat protein foods that mostly come from plant-based sources. Choosing a plant-based protein contains more fibre and less saturated fat. You may add protein foods to your diets, such as peas, beans, lentils, nuts, seeds, tofu, lean meat, poultry, eggs, and fish.
- Limit your intake of processed foods. It is best if you create a homemade version. Moreover, it is best to eat leftover baked chicken than the deli-meats or steel-cut oats than sweetened instant oats. If you choose processed food, it is best to eat them less often and in small amounts. Furthermore, if you want a quick and easy option, you may store healthy foods such as nuts, fruit, carrots, and hard-boiled eggs.
- Better to drink water than sugary drinks.
- Make sure to read food labels. This can help you make informed and smart food choices. Be aware that many foods marketed have high sodium, sugar, and saturated fat contents. So, make it a habit to read the food label.
- You can ask the help of a dietitian if it is hard to create a healthy meal plan.
3. Be Creative and Have Fun
Based on research, nearly 40% of children and youth aged 5 to 17 met the physical activity target. 2
This implies that over 60% of children and youth do not meet the physical activity target.
The Canadian 24-Hour Movement Guidelines for Children and Youth recommends that children and youth aged 5 to 17 must get at least 60 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) per day, on average.
Moreover, they need several hours of light play activity (LPA). It can be structured or non-structured activities. You can do some simple walking stretching, playing with your pets, and many others.
Furthermore, be creative in keeping your family moving. You may do the household chores together.
Moreover, you may also find some indoor games that can keep your family moving. You can try playing with an indoor obstacle course.
You may also try some fun indoor games that can make your family active and have fun:
- Scavenger & Treasure Hunts
- Hide and Seek
Furthermore, you may play some outdoor games such as bicycling, rollerblading, soccer, football, etc. As the pandemic continuous, remember to be safe and have fun doing some outdoor activities.
By being creative in making fun and exciting activities, you can encourage your kids to follow and get moving.
Moreover, please remember that you must have fun in doing these activities, never overdo them.
4. Add Some Limitations
Research also showed that just over half of children and youth aged 5 to 17 had no more than two hours of screen time per day. So, it implies that nearly half does not meet the recommended screen time per day.
Recommended Screen Time:
- Under 2 years old must not have screen time.
- Aged 2 to 4 must have less than one hour a day of screen time.
- Aged 5 to 17 must have a screen time of no more than 2 hours per day on average. 3
To keep your family active you should establish a healthy screen time habit.
But, How You Can Establish A Healthy Screen Time?
Screen time can include in front of the TV, gaming console, computer, tablet, and cell phone. Children can learn many good things from the advancement of technology. However, technology can take away the time spent playing and for their family.
Moreover, children having so much screen time are at risk of becoming overweight, sleep-deprived, less ready for school, less attentive, and less able to self-soothe since there is very little energy exerted during screen time. 4
Therefore, it is essential to establish a healthy screen time habit.
- As a parent, be a role model. Make time to play with your kids than facing your devices.
- It is essential to set rules for yourself and your children. Set of time on when to use the computer, phones, tablets, and other gadgets. It is best to set parental controls for your child’s safety. This can help you block sites and enforce limits.
- Always set time for your child and make them feel they are more important than the gadgets.
5. Create a Healthy Sleeping Habit
For adults sleeping enough can speed up our recovery, making our body recharge and be ready for the next day’s activity. Moreover, there are many great health benefits of having enough sleep.
Sleep has an important effect on children’s growth. It has a direct effect on their happiness, alertness, cognitive performance, mood, resiliency, vocabulary acquisition, learning, and memory. 5
A child’s lack of sleep can experience mood swings such as being grumpy and hyperactive. Lack of sleep can also affect his attention span affecting his performance in school.
Getting enough sleep is vital. However, this can be achieved by setting a consistent bedtime routine. With a consistent bedtime routine, a child knows that it is going to be bedtime.
- You may start by turning off your gadgets.
- Then, have them wear their pajamas and brush their teeth.
- To make them sleep well, read a story or sing them with a lullaby
- Make them sleep together with their favourite stuffed animal and a security blanket
6. Be Proactive about Your Family’s Health
Always prioritize your family’s health. Make sure you do not miss health appointments. If you encounter some health issues, do not hesitate to consult a health expert.
Let us keep the entire family active and healthy!
Evergreen Rehab & Wellness is a multidisciplinary clinic with highly skilled health professionals. We have acupuncturists in Coquitlam, physiotherapists, naturopathic doctors, registered massage therapists, chiropractors, kinesiologists, and clinical counselors we also have acupuncturists in Surrey and other practitioners in Surrey that are always ready to provide best-in-class service.
You may contact us through the following:
- Canada’s Food Guide – Unlock Food. (n.d.). Www.unlockfood.ca. https://www.unlockfood.ca/en/Articles/Canada-s-Food-Guide/Canada-s-Food-Guide.aspx
- Clarke, J. (2019, April 17). This is a health fact sheet about physical activity and screen time among Canadians aged 5 to 17 years of age. The results are based on data from cycle 5 (2016-2017) of the Canadian Health Measures Survey. Statcan.gc.ca; Government of Canada, Statistics Canada. https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/pub/82-625-x/2019001/article/00003-eng.htm
- Clarke, J. (2019, April 17). This is a health fact sheet about physical activity and screen time among Canadians aged 5 to 17 years of age. The results are based on data from cycle 5 (2016-2017) of the Canadian Health Measures Survey. Statcan.gc.ca; Government of Canada, Statistics Canada. https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/pub/82-625-x/2019001/article/00003-eng.htm)
- Canada, P. H. A. of. (2019, March 27). Mind: Screen Time. Aem. https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/publications/healthy-living/screen-time-nobodys-perfect.html
- Pacheco, D. (2020, September 24). Children and Sleep. Sleep Foundation. https://www.sleepfoundation.org/children-and-sleep