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Lighten the conversation about childhood obesity with 3 fun moves!

Childhood obesity is being called an ‘international epidemic’. In 2011-2012 around a quarter of all Australian children aged 5-17 years (24% of boys and 27% of girls) were either overweight or obese according to measured BMI. (Source: Australian Bureau of Statistics 4125.0 - Gender Indicators, Australia, Jan 2013)

For the last few months, parents have been bombarded with headlines and Facebook posts implicating everything from sugar to sneaky advertising tactics of fast food giants to carb over-load and over-worked parents as the culprits of our obesity crisis. It seems everyone has an opinion, and the finger pointing doesn’t seem to be ending anytime soon.

So whether you’re following Jamie Oliver on his UK Sugar Rush crusade, Pete Evans on his Paleo push, The Biggest Loser’s Commando Steve’s assault on Nestle, Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move program or recommendations by the Dieticians Association of Australia, education and re-thinking about what we feed our kids can’t be a bad thing! But what seems to be missing in these heated debates and alarmist headlines is the emotional well-being of our kids. Are our kids laughing enough? Are they spending enough time outdoors running around? Are they happy within themselves and their bodies? Are they confident in their own skin?

So while we’re sorting through the conflicting advice on what not to feed our kids, how to interpret confusing food labels and how to better manage our time as parents to shop and cook healthier, let’s dedicate a little time to show our kids how to be happy with who they are! Laughter is a great place to start, so here are 3 Fun Moves for guaranteed giggles:

1. Roll down a hill

Remember that feeling of lying at the top of a grassy hill and rolling down it? Covered in grass, feeling a little dizzy and releasing a contagious giggle that lasted from the top of the hill to the bottom.

2. Bounce on a trampoline

Kids Bouncing 0

Did you know that 10 minutes bouncing on a trampoline is equivalent to 30 minutes jogging? But don’t tell the kids that, to them it’s just fun! And maybe don’t tell them that a Springfree® Trampoline is the world’s safest trampoline, that’s for your peace of mind!

3. Cartwheel along

Cartwheels Beach

Whether it’s in the backyard or on the beach, cartwheels are liberating! Maybe it’s that rush of blood to the head or being able to look at the world from a different perspective, whatever it is about cartwheels, they are fun and smiles are guaranteed!

We all know childhood obesity is a serious topic, and as parents we need to take it seriously to ensure our kids are exposed to healthy choices. But let’s put it all into perspective and remember everything in moderation except fun, laughter and love. These three things you can never over-indulge in, along with rolling, bouncing and cartwheeling!