New Campaign Introduces Kids to Healthy Life Choices

DES MOINES, Iowa – The Central Iowa Coalition Launch is teaching kids how to make healthy choices in familiar environments.

5-2-1-0 Healthy Choice Campaign teaches children to have at least five fruits and vegetables a day, no more than two hours of recreational screen time, one hour of physical activity and zero sweetened drinks.

Health Officer for United Way of Central Iowa Erin Drinnin said the campaign is meant to change the learning environment in a good way.

“One of the great things about implementing 5-2-1-0 in a lot of these sites is they have just figured out ways that how can we expand on what we are already doing. The kids' strider program is really an additional opportunity for kids. So, when they go out to recess they all run a lap and they get to count it on these little lanyards so they can watch their progress over time,” Drinnin said.

According to United Way, 41.5% of Iowa kids watch TV or play one to four hours of video games each day.

Drinnin said some activities include: running a lap around the track, trying new vegetables and “brain breaks.”

“During the classroom day, kids may be sitting for a little while, they are getting a little wiggly, maybe they can’t focus. So, the teachers will have them get up and do a fun activity. Maybe they dance for a little bit to music in their seat, or they pretend that they are running in place or just something else to just take a break,” Drinnin said.

Drinnin said there are five schools in the metro area implementing the 5-2-1-0 Healthy Choice Campaign.

Carver Elementary will be introducing the program Monday morning at 9:30 a.m.