Reversing a Rising Tide of Chronic Conditions by Ronica A. O’Hara The statistics are startling—as many as a quarter to one half of American children now have a diagnosed chronic condition, according to studies that include one in Academic Pediatrics that includes obesity. Over the last few decades, the number of children with asthma has tripled to affect one in eight; those with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have doubled to one in 10; and autism diagnoses have increased at least 10-fold, to affect one in 50 (one in 31 boys).
Fresh Hope for a Troubled Planet by Linda Sechrist Recognizing that it might be too late by the time they are older, many young people are already acting collectively and across partisan aisles on everything from climate change and the environment to gun control, gender equality, social justice, education and politics.
How to Power Up Their Defenses by Marlaina Donato Strong immunity is a cornerstone of optimum health, and may be weakened or enhanced by what we eat and how we manage our emotions. Starting young in incorporating good ongoing habits can go a long way toward building a better immune response to whatever a person encounters.
Why Less Means More Happiness by Deborah Shouse Parents wishing to simplify child-raising seek less stress and more fun; less scheduling and more casual time; less “shoulds” and more “want-tos” less second-guessing and more confidence. For a happier family life, experts encourage parents to stay true to their own values, strengths and sense of family purpose, focusing on the wonders of their children instead of endless daily tasks. It begins with each child feeling loved.
Gardening Connects Kids to Nature by Barbara Pleasant Children benefit from a close connection with nature, and there’s no better place to learn about plants and soil than a garden. Families don’t need lots of space, as even a small collection of potted plants holds fascination for youngsters. The first step is to understand a garden as seen by a child that may be more interested in creative play than in making things grow.
Kids Love These Homemade Drinks by Judith Fertig At day camp or the pool, on the playing field or in the backyard, kids can get really thirsty, especially as temperatures climb. Although filtered water is always a good choice, sugary, carbonated, artificially colored and flavored beverages can be tempting. Having homemade options ready can entice kids to stay hydrated in a healthy way.
Nature Helps Kids Build Skills and Character by April Thompson A movement is afoot to get kids grounded in nature. Wilderness awareness programs, also known as primitive skills or Earth-based education, teach life-changing survival skills that build courage, compassion and camaraderie. “We help youth experience a true aliveness in nature. Kids gain knowledge of the outdoors and increase awareness, confidence and self-reliance, while having fun, positive experiences,” says Dave Scott, founder of the Earth Native Wilderness School, in Bastrop, Texas.
Five Steps to Positivity by Tamar Chansky This is a family master plan for helping both children and adults resist negative thinking. Step One: Empathize with a Child’s Experience While the desired outcome is to help a child embrace a different point of view of their situation, the first goal is not to come on too strong with an agenda of
How Teens Can Learn to Love Their Looks by Amber Lanier Nagle Many young women don’t feel comfortable in their own skin. A 21st-century global study sponsored by Unilever’s Dove brand found that 90 percent of girls from 15 to 17 years old wanted to change at least one aspect of their physical appearance, especially their body weight. University of Minnesota research following adolescents for 10 years showed that about half of the female participants had dieted in the previous year, twice the number of males.
Food Choices that Prevent Obesity by Amber Lanier Nagle Small changes in daily eating routines translate into healthier weight for America’s kids. In 2010, President Obama and Michelle Obama launched Let’s Move! as their signature initiative to tackle epidemic levels of U.S. childhood obesity. While modest progress has been made, it remains a public health crisis. A brief by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that the obesity rate remained fairly stable at nearly 17 percent between 2011 and 2014 for children 2 to 19 years old.