All posts by CHOC Children's

March Is National Nutrition Month

Are you frustrated because your kids aren’t eating more fruits and vegetables? “Just keep trying,” recommends Sue Freck, R.D., a CHOC registered dietitian. You may have to serve a new food as often as 10 times before your child will show any interest in it!

Freck says pleasurable associations with shopping, food preparation and family meals help children develop healthy dietary habits for life.

National Nutrition Month in March, is a great time for reinforcing healthy eating habits. To help get your kids started, here are a few yummy, healthy snacks recommended by the American Dietetic Association.

  • Mix together ready-to-eat cereal, dried fruit and nuts in a sandwich bag for an on-the-go snack.
  • Top low-fat vanilla yogurt with crunchy granola and sprinkle with blueberries.
  • Blend low-fat milk, frozen strawberries and a banana for thirty seconds for a delicious smoothie.
  • Make a mini-sandwich with tuna or egg salad on a dinner roll.
  • Toss dried cranberries and chopped walnuts in instant oatmeal.
  • Sandwich cut-outs: Make a sandwich on a whole grain bread. Cut out your favorite shape using a big cookie cutter.
  • Toast a whole grain waffle and top with low-fat yogurt and sliced peaches.
  • Stuff a whole grain pita pocket with ricotta cheese and Granny Smith apple slices. Add a dash of cinnamon.
  • Spread peanut butter on apple slices.

For more nutrition tips from our CHOC expert, click here:

White House Unveils Childhood Obesity Campaign

A study released this month by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), found that preschool children exposed to three household routines — regularly eating family meals, getting adequate sleep, and limiting screen-viewing time — had a roughly 40 percent lower prevalence of obesity than those exposed to none of these routines.

These findings were released the same week as the launch of First Lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move!” campaign to reduce the rates of childhood obesity in the United States. The initiative includes expanding efforts to make schools healthy environments for all children, increasing children’s physical activity, improving the affordability and accessibility of foods, and empowering consumers to make healthier choices.

As a fierce advocate for children, CHOC Children’s has remained a leader in the community in the prevention and treatment of childhood obesity. To read more about obesity and other helpful tips from the experts at CHOC, click here:

To learn more about CHOC’s programs and services, click here:
Or, visit to browse CHOC’s Health Library.

Talk To Your Kids About Money Issues

Talk about the economy is far from over, and if you haven’t already, it’s important to speak to your kids about it. Kids hear what’s going on from their friends, school, neighbors, etc. And chances are, if money is tight and it’s worrying you, it’s probably worrying your kids too.

When the moment is right, calmly discuss news about unemployment or belt-tightening and any concerns with your children. Make sure your conversation is age-appropriate and light. Here are some tips to consider when talking to your kids about money issues:

  • Keep talking! If economic problems continue, children may need periodic updates about what’s happening.
  • Listen to your children’s concerns.
  • Reassure children that it is perfectly normal to feel anxious about current economic troubles.
  • Emphasize that you are actively addressing the family’s financial situation.
  • Use job loss to teach children about the wisdom of saving money.
  • Accentuate the positive, including the strength of your family’s love.

For more tips on this timely topic, click here:

Flu Season Not Quite Over

Orange County has been getting plenty of sunshine these last couple days! Although we usually associate the flu season with colder temperatures – due to people staying inside and more likely to spread germs, as well as drier air – the flu season isn’t over yet! In fact, the flu season usually peaks anywhere from November through March.

Check out this link for all you need to know about the H1N1 and seasonal flu, including symptoms, when to seek treatment, and a link to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) with the latest updates.