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The Mt. Diablo Region YMCA Invites Families to 'Put Play in Your Day' and Bring Healthy Habits Home During the Nation's Largest Health Day for Children and Families

Saturday, April 12, 2008 General News J E 4
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PLEASANT HILL, Calif., April 11 The Mt. Diablo Region YMCAwill join more than 1,700 YMCAs nationwide in the 17th annual YMCA HealthyKids Day on Saturday, April 12 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the Concord ClaytonYMCA, Delta Family YMCA, and Irvin Deutscher Family YMCA. An opportunity forkids and families to "Put Play in Their Day," this special event uses free,fun, engaging and creative activities to encourage children and families toadopt behaviors that support a healthy lifestyle. YMCA Healthy Kids Day ispart of YMCA Activate America, a national initiative designed to help childrenand adults discover and sustain healthier ways to live. Locally, Healthy KidsDay is sponsored by Kaiser Permanente and Overaa Construction.

Unhealthy eating and physical inactivity are associated with an increasedrisk of a number of chronic health conditions, including overweight andobesity. In fact, the percentage of young people who are overweight hastripled over the last 25 years. In 2005, a panel of experts from the Centersfor Disease Control and Prevention recommended that school-age childrenparticipate in moderate to vigorous activity for a minimum of 60 minutes aday. Studies have shown that children who develop healthy exercise and eatinghabits while they are young are more likely to maintain healthy lifestylesthrough adulthood.

"The challenge is that many families see healthy living as anall-or-nothing proposition. Through this lens, achieving a healthier lifestylecan seem overwhelming or out of reach," said Adrienne Carew, vice president ofstrategic marketing for the Mt. Diablo Region YMCA. "YMCA Healthy Kids Dayshows families and kids that making healthy choices can be easy, fun andaccessible to everyone. And through our new Healthy Family Home resources,we're giving families take-home tools to help them assess the foundation ofhow they play, eat and connect together as a family."

Activities taking place during YMCA Healthy Kids Day vary from branch tobranch but includes health screenings, arts and crafts, interactive games,cooking demonstrations, health and safety seminars, health and fitness classesdesigned for kids, and more. Parents are encouraged to participate in thesehealthy and engaging activities with their kids. Registration for summerprograms and camps will also take place at the event.

A free YMCA giveaway with tips on raising healthy, active kids willavailable, as will prizes for all children who participate in the day'sactivities. Additional resources will be available to help kids and familiesachieve their greatest potential from strengthening their financial health tobuilding better bonds together to improving their physical health andnutritional well-being.

"So many families and individuals desire a healthier and happier life butstruggle to sustain it," said Carew. "Whether they are in our YMCA facilities,out in the community, or in their own homes, we want families to know that weare here to help them find a way to start establishing new, healthy habits,and that we also offer a supportive community to help them along the way."

YMCA Healthy Kids Day reminds Americans that as individuals and familiesthey can be a part of improving their community as well as themselves --strengthening bonds, building positive values, spending time together,improving the health and well-being of their family, and making friends forlife.

YMCA Healthy Kids Day is generously sponsored nationally by companiesdedicated to improving the health and wellness of American kids and families,including the Disney Channel, Eli Lilly and Company, Northwestern MutualFoundation, and Tropicana. In addition, Kaiser Permanente and OveraaConstruction are local co-sponsors of this free family event.

For more information about YMCA Healthy Kids Day, please call AdrienneCarew at 925.887.4648 or visit http://mdrymca.org.

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