SHEPPARD AIR FORCE BASE, Texas --
The 82nd Medical Group Health Promotion Office hosted the Kidilicious: Kid's Cooking Class at the Sheppard Air Force Base Community Activity Center for children and their parents Thursday, September 28, 2017.
Kidilicious is a free cooking class geared towards children ages 4-12 that focuses on healthy eating and snacking for children and their families. The goal is to show children that healthy eating can be delicious and fun.
Della Brasier, 5, said the black berries were her favorite snack at the event.
Sheppard’s Registered Dietician, Saralauren Peacock, led the event and demonstrated how to prepare simple, kid-friendly snacks while providing tips on making healthy food choices for families.
“I hope the kids leave feeling empowered to help cook at home with their parents as well as try new and different recipes that they would not normally eat,” Peacock said.
The United States Department of Agriculture developed choosemyplate.gov to assist people of all ages in making healthy lifestyle choices. The My Plate is designed to help people build a nutritious meal and maintain a healthy eating style. Each child was given a My Plate to keep and use at home.
Helping children develop healthy eating habits at a young age influences the choices they will continue to make as adults. Programs like Kidilicious are designed to educate and motivate but ultimately, family members must set a healthy example for children.
“Children learn through observation and imitation,” Peacock said. “Parents, grandparents, teachers, and everyone that has a significant role in a child’s life will play a part in developing their eating habits.”
Peacock advises families to avoid using junk food as a reward for children who eat healthy foods like fruit and vegetables. In a child’s mind, this strategy reinforces the idea that healthy foods are undesirable and that unhealthy foods are rewarding.
“Kids need to know what’s nutritious,” said Melinda Pace, a mother attending the event with her three children. “There’s so much junk food out there and it’s good to help kids learn about healthy food while they’re young.”
It’s no secret that weight management is a concern for families in America. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention reports more than one third of children and adolescents in our country are overweight or obese.
“This extra weight comes with a long list of health problems rarely seen in young children before now,” Peacock said. “These include high blood pressure, elevated blood lipids, type 2 diabetes, joint pain, reactive airway disease and low self-esteem.”
The event was also sponsored by the Airmen and Family Readiness Center, the Wichita Falls Area Food Bank and the Texas Women, Infants and Children organization. All parties teamed up to provide cooking supplies, snack materials, the My Plate and a free apron for each child in attendance.
At a time when four out of five children are not eating the recommended daily servings of fruits and vegetables, Sheppard’s Health Promotion office is determined to lend a healthy hand in every way possible.
Upcoming Health Promotions Events:
Grocery Store Tour, October 25, 2017, 11 a.m. – 12 p.m.
Are you confused about what to buy and what to avoid at the grocery store? Shopping for healthy meals doesn’t have to be overwhelming! You’ll walk away from this tour a savvier shopper with a step-by-step action plan for shopping and eating healthy.
Physically Fit Class, October 16, 2017, beginner class 11 a.m. – 12 p.m., advanced class 12 – 1 p.m.
Physically Fit is for anyone looking to improve their fitness and learn more about proper form and lifting techniques. This hour long course will consist of elements of strength and conditioning, strategic recovery and education to help participants maximize physical condition and performance. Free and open to all of Team Sheppard.
If you have health-related questions or would like to sign up for an event, contact Saralauren Peacock, MS, RD, LD, at 940-676-6003.