Children get a taste of healthy leadership
STUDENTS PERSUADING PEERS TO EAT BETTER
THE Year 5 students of Our Lady of the Rosary Primary School in St Marys have taken the Cancer Council’s Eat It To Beat It program to another level.
Ameek Brar and Gourvika Kumar are two of the student ambassadors responsible for inspiring their peers to eat healthier by putting up healthy recipes in the school’s newsletter and researching questions asked by other students.
The 2011 NSW School Students Health Behaviours Survey found that just 49 per cent of children aged between two and 15 in Western Sydney and the Blue Mountains ate enough fruit and only 28 per cent ate enough vegetables every day.
Ameek, 10, was concerned about the effects junk food could have on kids her age.
“I normally see lots of children eat junk food and it can make them sick if they eat too much,” she said.
Gourvika, 10, admitted she struggled to eat healthy, but being an ambassador helped keep her on track.
“I have to eat healthy because if I don’t, then it does not make me a good role model like the other people,” she said.
The school’s learning coordinator, Nicole Darby, said the program also gave the students an opportunity to develop leadership skills.
The Eat It To Beat It campaign was started after the American Society of Clinical Oncology warned that obes- ity would soon overtake smoking as the top risk factor for cancer.
The 2010 NSW Schools Physical Activity and Nutrition Survey revealed one in five children aged between five and 17 were either overweight or obese.
Cancer Council research also revealed about 93 per cent of adults in Western Sydney did not eat enough vegetables and about half did not eat enough fruit.
Our Lady of the Rosary Primary School’s Year 5 students have become ambassadors of healthy eating under the Eat It To Beat It program.