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Study Says Pizza is a Major Obstacle to Kids Fitness

Study Says Pizza is a Major Obstacle to Kids Fitness

A new study on kids fitness found that almost one in four teens eat pizza on an average day adding an extra 230 calories, 5 grams of saturated fat and 484 mg of sodium to their diet. See what experts recommend for helping kids to lighten up on pizza.

Researchers tracked pizza consumption by American teens and younger kids. The figures were not much better for children 2 to 11 either. One out of 5 of them ate pizza on a given day. The study was conducted by the University of Illinois Chicago and published in the journal Pediatrics. It raises health concerns about nutrition-related diseases such as type 2 diabetes and hypertension.

The study recommends making pizza more nutritious and getting kids to eat less of it. You can slim down the usual order of pepperoni or sausage by switching to vegetables. Limit servings to 1 or 2 slices and regard it as a meal rather than a snack.

Even better make it yourself at home or go to pizza parlors that use less cheese, lower fat cheese, and whole wheat crusts. Some groups are also advocating taking pizza off of school cafeteria menus so it is more of a special treat than a weekly staple. Finally, parents can model good habits by preparing balanced meals instead of relying on any convenience foods.

Naturally, the other side of the equation is exercise. Teens ought to know that they will have to walk about 5 miles or the equivalent of 10,000 steps to burn off just 250 calories.

On the bright side, Merritt Athletic Clubs provide lots of options that your kids will find more fun than walking all that way. We offer KidFIT classes, birthday parties, swimming, and summer camps. Contact us so your kids can enjoy their pizza as part of a healthy lifestyle full of nutritious whole foods and plenty of activity.