Dr. David Katz is my hero

Happy Friday all! Hope everyone is having a great day. I have been meaning to share some information with you all that I got from the Health Promotion conference I attended. One of the main things I gained is a love for Dr. David Katz, an INCREDIBLE (to say the least) doctor and activist promoting health and nutrition for all, but especially children!

I had initially heard of him through Carrots N Cake website because he created NuVal, this really cool way to look at food. Instead of simply concentrating on calories, it takes all ingredients of the food into account and gives each food a number between 1-100, the closer to 100 the healthier the food. He explained the need for this system through this example:

Say a busy mother is grocery shopping with her children in mind. She wants to buy foods that are tasty and healthy for her kids. In the peanut butter isle she comes across 2 choices: regular peanut butter or reduced fat peanut butter. Wanting to keep her kids healthy, she chooses the reduced fat; I mean that’s what the media tells us is better. Unfortunately, when choosing the reduced fat, she is choosing the less healthy choice and she doesn’t even know it. Although there is a reduction of fat in the pb, there is an increase in sodium and decrease in fiber.

What NuVal would do is provide numbers so the two pb’s can be easily compared. They are currently testing out the NuVal system in a bunch of Kroger grocery stores so hopefully they will be everywhere sometime in the near future! Until then, you can check out the list at this site.

Another AWESOME thing Dr. Katz has done is created 2 programs for grade school children to learn more about nutrition and get moving! The best part about these programs, is they are completely FREE. The first is nutrition detectives which teaches kids and their parents about reading labels. The cartoons and activities they are created for nutrition detectives is super fun and I know kids would love it (I mean my mama is a 4th grade teacher so I have seen what her kids go nuts for over the years; and telling her about these programs was one of the first things I did).  The other program is ABC, Activity Bursts in the Classroom for Fitness.  This outlines to teachers how to incorporate more active things in the class. It does not take away from teaching though, it is supposed to take up the time that a teacher might spend discipling the kids when they get rowdy and replace that with movement (jumping jacks, dancing, etc).  Kids love to move and not only is it great for health purposes to get kids moving, but it also allows them to expend that energy, making them more productive when it’s back to the books. Dr. Katz stresses Recess Not Ritalin (LOVE THAT!).

I HIGHLY encourage you guys to take a look at these programs and/or forward the websites to any grade school teachers you know.

Dr. Katz also promotes health and wellness overall, and I wanted to share one of the COOLEST things I have ever heard that he mentioned in his talk at the conference.  He says that we all like to play the blame game about our country getting obese and that is just not helping anything. What he says is:

“You do not have to accept responsibility for the problem in order to take responsibility for the solution”

What he means is ‘ok so we are a big country’ but trying to figure out who to blame for our problems isn’t helping. We ARE responsible for ourselves though, and we each have the responsibility to take action and become healthy!

Welp, that’s it for me for now! I’ll be back later with some food posting. Hope some of these things from Dr. Katz inspire you as much as they do me!!

3 Responses

  1. Hey girly…this is TOTALLY up my alley! Thanks for letting me know. Sorry I have been MIA…that stomach bug killed me! I have tons of catching up to do!! You are too sweet to have thought of me though!! Would you care if I linked back to this on my blog this afternoon??

  2. […] a more serious note, Jill, wrote this post last week and it is AWESOME! Please go read this. She commented on my blog that […]

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