Healthy Abbotsford Blog

The 31 Healthiest Foods of All Time (with Recipes)

We often hear of various healthy foods in the media. But what the heck do you do with kale, kidney beans, eggplant, quinoa, bulgar or chia seeds? This article, The 31 Healthiest Food of All Time,  from Time not only tells you why these 31 foods are good for you but it also goes through how to cook them, how many calories are in a serving and gives you a recipe for each to get started with.

Kale

Kale

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Ultimate Guide to Good Posture at Work

Get health and fitness tips at Greatist.com

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Free Workouts at Home

The Canadian Diabetes Association has create a series of videos of workouts that you can do from home with very little equipment. While the videos are designed as a resource for those with diabetes, the information is also really good for anyone who is new to exercise. To see all of the videos click here and scroll down to the bottom of the page.

Introduction

Workout #1

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No time for the gym? Try nano-workouts!

Here is a really great blog post from Obesity Panacea:

Despite the best of intentions, many people may feel that there are simply too many hurdles to overcome before they find themselves exercising at a gym. You need a gym membership (often steep), you need appropriate clothing and shoes, you need to get yourself across town, you need to plan your workout for the day, and so on. What’s important to remember is that (as far as your health is concerned) physical activity is good for you regardless of where it is done and how fashionable your LuLu Lemon gear might be.

Additionally, as we’ve discussed at length on Obesity Panacea, how much time you spend sitting during the day has a negative impact on your health REGARDLESS of how much exercise you may squeeze it at a later time.

Hence the brilliance of the Nano Workout website. Started by Joakim Christoffersson, the site provides countless ideas for squeezing in mini workouts while doing routine activities, thereby eliminating the need for gym memberships, athletic clothing and the lot.

To read the rest of the post click here.

cartoon of a person doing squats while brushing their teeth

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What Does it Take to Make our Children Happier?

That is that exact question that ParticipACTION is answering in their new campaign, Bring Back Play! This is such a great message that all parents need to hear. Here is the official info from ParticipACTION:

We’re excited to share our most recent campaign, Bring Back Play, which encourages parents to increase their children’s physical activity levels by bringing back the fun games and unstructured active play that used to be a part of every childhood.

What’s the value of play?

Active play may be fun, but it’s certainly not frivolous. Play allows youth of all ages to try new things, test boundaries and use their imaginations.

In addition to the physical health benefits, active play offers cognitive, emotional and social development benefits. It has been shown to improve and foster motor function, creativity, decision-making, problem-solving and social skills, the ability to control emotions and preschoolers’ speech. And, it’s lots of fun!

Unfortunately, 63% of Canadian kids free time after school and on weekends is spent being sedentary. We need to get our kids moving, and we’ve got plenty of great ideas, tips and information on bringing more play into your children’s lives.


Many parents struggle with coming up with games/activities for their kids. ParticipACTION has developed a fantastic tool, that is free, that teaches you all sorts of easy to play games that are fun (many of which you probably played as a kid). Click here to go to the tool.

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International Walk to School Week

This week is International Walk to School Week. During this time, children from kindergarten through Grade 12 will be able to ride free on transit (must have a valid GoCard). So it is a great time to explore alternative ways for your kids to get to school. Maybe they can walk the whole way, maybe they take transit for part and walk the rest. There are lots of options.

Not comfortable with the idea of your kids walking to school? Talk to some of your neighbors and see if a group of kids can walk together, maybe one of the parents could walk with them.

Walking to school is better for your child’s physical and mental health, it builds confidence and independence and reduces the amount of traffic around the schools (which makes all kids safer).

For more information visit HASTe BC.

international walk to school week poster

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Kids in the Kitchen – Imagination Popsicles

Better Together BC promotes a hands on approach to family, food and fun. In one of their recent blogs they wrote about the importance of getting kids into the kitchen:

In addition to quality time, kids who cook enjoy better health, improved academic and social skills, and greater confidence. Some studies show that kids who eat regularly with their families are less likely to struggle with drugs or alcohol later in life.

Here is another great video of a simple recipe that you and your kids can make together.

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Can TV Watching Be Healthy?

Obesity Panacea recently posted some information on a recent study that looked at what would happen if people were active during commercial breaks when watching TV. You might be surprised!

In the US, TV viewing is the most popular sedentary leisure-time ‘activity’; the average American watches between 3-5 hrs of TV per day (up to 35hrs per week). By contrast, the same people state that they simply do not have enough time to meet the recommended level of physical activity (150 minutes per week).

Another neat idea here is using TV commercial breaks as prompts to get up, and also to use the duration of the break as the time to move. Since a 30-minute TV program consists of approximately 8-12 minutes of commercials, someone who watches 90-minutes of television could accumulate between 24-36 minutes of physical activity – approximately what is recommended.

And that is exactly what participants in this study did over a period of 6 months. One group was told to walk for 30 minutes on at least 5 days of the week (normal physical activity recommendations), while the other was instructed to step in one place or to walk briskly around their home during commercial breaks over a 90-minute period of television viewing on at least 5 days per week. Both groups received 6 monthly phone calls, attended monthly meetings for the first 3 months, and received monthly newsletters for the last 3 months. In other words, the intervention was quite ‘hands-off’.

At the end of the 6 months, both groups increased the number of daily steps taken (4611 to 7605 steps/day in the TV commercial stepping group and 4909 to 7865 steps/day in the walking group). Both groups also decreased their TV viewing time (from approximately 4 to 3 hours per day) and caloric intake (~2000 kcal/day to ~1700 kcal/day). In response to these lifestyle changes the participants’ waist and hip circumferences also reduced by a few centimeters.

So, enjoy TV and don’t want to give it up? Maybe you don’t have to, just get moving during those commercials! To read the full article click here.

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Simple, Fun Activity to Get Your Kids Moving

Getting your kids active doesn’t have to be expensive or complicated. Here is a really simple activity from Active for Life that they can do that gets them moving, laughing and learning fundamental movement skills.

Balloons are the decoration of childhood. They also provide a perfect opportunity to practice fundamental movement skills while having fun.

Blow up a few balloons of your child’s favorite color and the prep work is complete. If they ask why the house is filled with party decorations, tell them you’re celebrating being active for life.

  • Blow up two to three balloons per participant. This activity works well with one or many children. Just make sure the play space is large enough for everyone to move around freely.
  • Throw one balloon in the air. The main objective of balloon juggling is for the balloons to never touch the ground.
  • Time how long your child can keep one balloon in the air.
  • Once they’ve mastered the basic skill, add in some challenges like throwing two or three balloons in the air at once.
  • You can also limit which body parts can touch the balloon. Try keeping the balloons up with only a right hand, left hand, right foot, left foot or head.

girl playing with balloons

To access the original article click here.

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My Kid is in the Kitchen – Now What?

Lately we have had a few posts around getting your kids in the kitchen so they can start to learn (and love) cooking healthy food. The videos have concentrated more on the recipes that you could use and less on how to actually make it fun for your child. I recently watched this video that I think really highlights how you can make the actual cooking process fun for your child.  It is only a couple of minutes long and will give you some good ideas on what to actually do to make the experience fun (and the recipe and cooking instructions are provided at the end of the video).

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