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Developing a healthy lifestyle

Molly Shore

Exercise and healthy foods were the order of the day Tuesday at the

Children’s Health and Fitness Fair hosted by the Boys and Girls Club

of Burbank.

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Julie Frank, spokeswoman for the Coalition for a Healthy and

Active America, a nonprofit grass-roots coalition that promotes fit

lifestyles for youngsters, said that the purpose of the fair is to

create a healthy community for children.

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“Children today are now facing an epidemic of diseases and

obesity,” Frank said.

The coalition, by taking the fairs to various locations around the

state, is attempting to foster healthy lifestyle opportunities for

kids while increasing the community’s knowledge through local and

state organizations like the YMCA and Boys and Girls Club, she said.

“Physical education and nutrition are the two main goals we want

to improve in youth,” Frank said.

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Chet Conroy, a fifth-grader at Roosevelt, believes in a healthy

lifestyle. The pint-size Kevin Bacon look-alike said he has been

taking karate since he was 4, and he chooses healthy foods like

broccoli.

“McDonald’s is nasty,” he said, scrunching up his nose in disgust.

“I go to In-N-Out Burger.”

Although turkey and chicken hot dogs were served at the fair,

ice-cold Cokes were also available, along with water.

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Kiera Moran, 9, a Providencia fifth-grader, nursed a Vanilla Coke.

“I eat vegetables all the time, and my parents won’t let me drink

more than two sodas a day,” she said.

Karen Greeney, project coordinator for the coalition, believes

that a balanced approach has to be taken to health and fitness.

“As long as you’re active, that’s the key,” she said.

Jay Jackson, athletic director at the Boys and Girls Club, said

the earlier in life children are taught, the easier it is for them to

develop good nutrition and exercise habits.

“Obviously, it will help them establish a foundation for good

health, not only in the present, but in the future,” Jackson said.


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