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Thousands of DFW School Children Commit to Healthier Eating

Kids Teaching Kids April 12, 2016

Winners of Medical City Children’s Hospital kids teaching kids 21-Day Challenge Announced

Nearly 40,000 school children from across the Dallas-Fort Worth area made a commitment to healthier eating and took the Medical City Children’s Hospital 21-Day Challenge with the kids teaching kids program.

The kids teaching kids program educates students and parents about developing lifelong healthy snacking and eating habits.

For the past three years, kids teaching kids has hosted a friendly competition among North Texas school districts to see which one can get the most children involved. Snack recipe books developed by high school culinary students are distributed during the sign-up period. Children must document that they made a healthy snack by themselves for each of the 21 days. The goal is to change habits through repetition.

Data collected from this year’s challenge suggests that the program is working. Of the 39,894 children signed up, 69.8 percent admitted that they had tried a fruit or vegetable they had never before eaten.

“The 21-Day Challenge empowers children to start taking control of their own health early in life,” said Keith Zimmerman, FACHE, CEO of Medical City Children’s Hospital. “Teaching children healthy eating habits on the front end prevents us from treating the disease on the back end. That’s our goal.”

The 21-Day Challenge competition matched school district against school district. Allen ISD had more participants than Prosper ISD, Frisco ISD beat Lewisville ISD, Richardson ISD won over Mesquite ISD, and Rockwall ISD had more students sign up than Wylie ISD.

A trophy was presented to each of the winning school districts.

“When kids eat healthy, everyone wins,” said Ryan Eason, program director for the kids teaching kids program.

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