SSM Health: Ways to make exercise and healthy eating a fun family activity

MADISON, Wis. —  Healthy hearts start early! It’s a phrase often used by medical professionals, but the Recipe for Health team really wants to drive that point home. For many kids, tell them to exercise and eat healthy doesn’t have the same ring as let’s cook together or let’s play a game. That’s where SSM Health cardiologist Andrea Rock says to have some fun with it.

“I don’t know anyone who doesn’t have fun playing freeze tag, which is a great activity with kids,” said Rock. “It can be played indoors, it gets adults going, and you can have all kinds of fun with the positions you make when you’re frozen, and how you get unfrozen by the other people playing. I have found infinite variations of freeze tag and highly recommend it”

The big idea is to simply get your body moving in a way that you and your family enjoy, that doesn’t seem like a chore. Dr. Rock says cooking and eating together as a family boosts all health benefits, including the heart, no matter what kind of food is served. Keep in mind, that meal doesn’t always have to be dinner. Dr. Rock also says relaxing with a furry friend also reduces blood pressure and adrenaline.

Our time for kids: recipe for health team is asking what you want to hear about. Let us know what health topics you’re interested in, or share your family’s health story with us, online at ssmhealth.com/timeforkids.