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Children’s Healthy Eating And Exercise Made Easy By These 19 Books

Give the future feminists a chance at health.

For more than 70 years the corporate machine has done more damage to the health and bodies of consumers worldwide, all for their coveted profits. Pushing increasingly dubious products they, with the help of their loyal friends at the advertising industry, deemed safe for consuming and a must-have in your regular diet.

The deceptiveness involved in masquerading food engineered to be, for the lack of a better word, addictive to the taste buds but carelessly disregarding their actual nutritional value has created fat and unhealthy people. This ha been exaggerated by the increased need for you to be a passive consumer, sitting quietly, being told through the screens what to buy next. This is becoming so evident at a younger age.

Transforming children into passive consumers is simply disgusting. Children should be joyful, energetic, and running around the place instead of eating ice cream 8 times a week in front of the tv. It is time to reverse that trend if we ever want to give kids a chance at a healthy life in the modern world. That begins by stepping in and making sure they follow the advice outlined in these books about healthy eating and exercise for children. Give them a chance at health.

#1 Oh, The Things You Can Do That Are Good for You by Tish Rabe

This book is extremely well written. Dr Seuss is an all time favorite, and adored by kids. This book will help teach your children how to eat healthy and exercise in a fun and engaging way.

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#2 How did that get in my lunchbox? The Story of Food

This is such a great book for kids to learn how foods get to their home and ultimately, their lunchbox. The illustrations are beautiful and very eye-catching with all the colors they use. It’s a simple, easy read, but takes kids from the farms and factories of where these foods come from, and how they get to our grocery stores, step by step. It illustrates how much goes into making these foods and shows kids that things don’t just appear in the grocery store; everything comes from another location.

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#3 The Monster Health Book

This book, while it has a lot of illustrations and beautiful pictures, also has A LOT of great facts and tips about food. It’s definitely for a little bit older of an age group (8-12 y/o), but I even learned some new things I didn’t know about foods. It takes the kids through each food group, identifies those foods that fall into that group and little facts about each food.

It even gets into the importance of vitamins and minerals which is great! I love this book and it has so much information, I learn something new everytime I read it! As a dietitian, I definitely recommend having this book for your kids, or even yourself because I have no doubt you’ll learn something cool!

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#4 Hashem’s Candy Store by Bracha Goetz

This delightful picture book by a Harvard-educated author not only demonstrates the joys of eating healthfully, it also shows the amazing wisdom found in fruits and veggies!

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#5 Stretch the T Rex by Len Saunders

The perfect guide to teach youngsters how to have fun and stay fit. Excellent for home and classroom use and adaptable for children with special needs. The concept of this book is to get every child up and moving to the best of their capabilities. Get up and get going with Stretch the T. Rex!

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#6 From A to Z with Energy by Connie Bergstein Dow

The perfect book to get your kids bouncing and exercising while you read! After years of experience in Dance and healthy movement, Connie Bergstein Dow created a book especially for kids to get them excited about moving. Each letter of the alphabet has a dedicated movement or exercise to try as you read along. Great fun to have together!

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#7 My Active Imagination by Karlyn Rubeniuk

I love it because it opens up the conversation about being physically active with our kids early, but it also speaks to the parent as they read the fun rhyming story. It reminds them why they should be active WITH their kids. It also shows the main character moving from being inactive and eating junk food to being active and eating healthy at the end.

The whole “rhyming adventure” is fun and silly and has a hidden caterpillar throughout each scene who then transforms itself into a butterfly—with a great quote at the end saying essentially that change can happen you just have to believe and put in the work. All in all this little picture book is a fun feel good rhyming adventure about fitness and family and sadly not very many people know it exists. Kids love the illustrations, the funny rhymes and the message of why being active is important and good for the whole family.

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#8 Finding Your Fit: A Kid-To-Kid Guide to Fitness, Food, and Feelings

The story line of Finding Your Fit is engaging and defines basic terminology in a way that is easy to comprehend for children. Children identify with the main character Gabby, as she learns to live a healthy lifestyle and develop positive self-esteem. Woven through the story are talking points and reflective journaling writing opportunities where children can express their thoughts and emotions, while parents can keep gather valuable information through this form of communication.

Finding Your Fit opens the lines of communication and support that children are often lacking as they begin to develop self-esteem and identity. Bibliotherapy (using books to assist in problem solving relevant to the therapeutic process) is a valuable intervention for helping children cope with stressors and can provide structured communication between caregivers and children.

The book is divided into three sections; food, fitness and feelings. Basic helpful strategies and Introduced on all topics with the guidance of fitness expert, Jim White of Jim White Fitness and Nutrition. The story is based on the true events of the main character, Gabby. Together with help from a community of support- Gabby learns about nutrition, fitness and builds her self esteem.

She learns to take care of herself and become her very own health advocate. Finding Your Fit is a valuable resource for families, therapists, school personnel, and other professionals who work with children on the topics of fitness, nutrition, and development of positive self-esteem and acceptance.

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#9 Eating the Alphabet by Lois Ehlert

This book is a great way to introduce different fruits and vegetables to your little one! By making them familiar at such a young age, when they appear on their plate they will not be unknown or scary to them! You can say, we are eating watermelon just like in your book.

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#10 Discovering Yoga with Animals by Arianna Sertoli

This book is about learning yoga poses in a fun way. We will be traveling to different places and learn how to move our bodies in a great and playful way.

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#11 Can Muscles Talk by Patrick Greak

Parents, educators, youth fitness professionals, and coaches can also glean wisdom from this book on how to apply these directions into specific conditioning programs that are safe and effective.

Exercise can impart tremendous character qualities including healthy social skills, self-esteem + confidence, body and mind discipline, respect for elders, and the value of honest/hard work-ethic. Photos and drawings are strategically interspersed to give visual aids and explain what certain concepts mean.

Also included is a definitions and deliberations section where children can learn new fitness terms and have questions posed to them designed to enumerate critical thinking skills in the discipline of kinesiology.

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#12 Eating the Rainbow by Star Bright Books

Eating the Rainbow is a board book that teaches 0-2 year olds about colors using fresh, healthy foods. The kids depicted in the book represent many different backgrounds and they are all heartily enjoying foods like strawberries (red), watermelon (pink), and grapes (green).

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#13 Green is a Chile Pepper: A Book of Colors

Green is a Chile Pepper: A Book of Colors demonstrates to 2-5 year olds foods and other items that are important to Latin American cultures. White palomitas (popcorn) and red spices share space with blue skies and yellow masa. Readers will learn about wonderful foods and some Spanish vocabulary too!

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#14 Dumpling Soup by Jama Kim Rattigan

Dumpling Soup is a heartwarming story about a young Hawaiian girl who gets to share in the making of the traditional New Year’s Eve dumpling soup with her grandmother. This story focuses on family, traditions and fresh, healthy food that has sustained families for generations. No preservatives here!

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#15 The Ugly Vegetables

The Ugly Vegetables offers a glimpse inside a Chinese-American family. The little girl notices that the vegetables in her mother‘s garden don’t look like the decorative flowers that adorn the other gardens on the street. She feels embarassed about her mother’s garden full of ugly vegetables until her mother makes soup out of of the ugly vegetables. The aroma from her mother’s soup brings neighbors to their door hoping for a taste and the neighbors start growing Chinese vegetables as well! The book also includes a recipe for Ugly Vegetable Soup!

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#16 Feast for 10 by Cathryn Falwell

Feast for Ten will help your 0-4 year olds learn to count and will build their appreciation for a healthy shared family meal. Readers will get to count to ten twice, as they shop for greens and carrots and then cook for ten hungry folks to share the meal!

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#17 Rainbow Stew by Cathryn Falwell

What happens when three children are visiting Grandpa and their plans get rained out? Why you gather up fresh vegetables from the garden and make Rainbow Stew! This is a sweet book that focuses on the relationship between three young siblings and their grandfather. Readers also get a recipe for making Rainbow Stew. Children from 4-8 will love reading this book.

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#18 Olives Where Are You? by G B Gurland

Olives Where Are You? is an invitation to let go of what is familiar and try something different. It explores what happens when Emily decides that there is one and only one food she must have at each meal.

Designed for young readers and their parents, Olives Where Are You? is a contemporary family account of a child’s insistence and her parents’ patient persistence. Emily rejects her parents’ attempts to get her to experiment with new foods. In fact, she digs her heels in with any suggestion that she change her mind. Emily does eventually come around and accept an alternative to her beloved olives, but only through her own process of self-discovery..

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#19 Lions and Tigers and Terrorists, Oh My! How to Protect Your Child in a Time of Terror

What does a children’s book about terrorism have to do with healthy eating and exercise? Lions and Tigers and Terrorists, Oh My! is an award-winning children’s book that specifically talks about eating and exercise as part of what children can do to make themselves more resilient in today’s world. It won the New York, London, Paris and Hollywood Book Festivals, as well as a Mom’s Choice award.

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Contributors to this article
Dr. Lucas Bader from DrLucasMD

Kristen Peterson from PrimeLife Nutrition, LLC

Bracha Goetz from Bracha’s Books

Len Saunders from LenSaunders

Brooke Van Sickle from Journey to KidLit

Charlene Bazarian from N/A

Kimberly King from Kimberly King Books

Lindsay Hazard from Cherish Nutrition

Emily Powers from Waldorf Publishing

Mijha Godfrey from Jambo Books, LLC

Cassidy Colarik from Austin Macauley Publishers

Carole Lieberman from Terrorism 4 Kids

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