Mini-Session 4: Healthy Body/Healthy Mind – Part 1 Nutrition and Physical Activity

Josefina Bojorquez

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In this session participants will learn about the importance of a balanced nutrition and physical activity. Participants will be better prepared to promote healthy habits in their home.

Popular Saying: Better safe than sorry. 

As a result of this session, participants will:

  • Gain knowledge of practical tips for activities they can do at home to promote  their children’s physical well-being, specifically making healthy decisions and  taking action on nutrition, physical activity, and access to health care.
  • Understand the mind-body connection throughout each stage of child  development.
  • Learn how to be strong advocates for their children’s physical well-being.


Research shows that children as young as two years of age imitate their parents’ food and physical activity habits. Across many cultures, rituals related to family meals foster family connectedness, strengthen parent- child relationships, and communicate culture and values. The choices parents make influence the decisions children make as adults and may affect their physical, mental,  and behavioral outcomes. More than ever, it is important for families to create a lifestyle that  encourages healthy eating and movement. Children learn and notice more about what their  parents do, than what they say.

Promoting a healthy lifestyle and opportunities to make healthy choices where people live,  work and play are important for addressing the high rates of obesity, hypertension, and diabetes.

We now see health problems in children living in the United States previously seen only in adults. These health problems include: heart disease, high blood pressure, cholesterol, hip and joint problems, and Type 2 diabetes. Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure, nontraumatic  lower-limb amputations, and new cases of blindness among adults in the U.S. All of these    diseases can affect a child’s ability to learn into adulthood. Some of the serious long-term risks include negative impacts on mental health and a shortened life span.

This data and these statistics give us an urgent message about the importance of taking action on nutrition, physical activity, and other preventive measures at an early age. During this session, participants will explore their beliefs and practices about food, take steps to improve their nutritional and physical activity habits, and increase their awareness about health-related advocacy opportunities and how to access health resources in their communities.