Preparing our Nation’s Kids to be Active and Healthy – Guest Article by

Today, only 21% of children are physically active for 60 minutes per day or more and only 21% of adults meet the recommended physical activity guidelines!  It is possible that the current generation of youth may have a lower life expectancy than their parents for the first time ever!  How can we address this issue? 083017_HHS_50MS-Logo_SHAPE-America

Read this article on written by a Physical Education teacher in D.C. to find out more!

Article submitted by 4-H Grant Manager, Karen


Market Mastery


A trip to your local Farmer’s Market in the Summer is a great way to involve the whole family in a fun and holistic healthy living activity! Delaware Farmer’s Markets sell inexpensive locally grown and in season produce as well as other market items like meats, eggs and cheeses from near by farms. As if the delicious local foods weren’t enough, many of the markets also have entertainment and activities that are fun for all ages. Music, crafts, recipe demos (shout out to UD Cooperative Extension), and there are even Kid’s Days. Click here for the Delaware Farmer’s Market Guide to find a market near you.

Delaware 4-H wants you to make the most of your market experience by following these three simple tips:

  • Know what’s in season.

When it comes to produce, looking for items that are in season will maximize the quality of the product and help minimize your cost.

Summer Seasonal Fruits

Sweet summer fruits are a great way to refresh and cool off after a hot day outside. The bright colors also make them fun to eat and to add to salads with summer vegetables.

Summer Vegetables

  • Show up early or late.

The market will be less crowded at these times. We recommend arriving at the very start of the market to ensure the best selection of items or arriving later in the market for the best prices. Check the Farmer’s Market Guide (link is above) for times.

  • Plan your recipes ahead of time.

Having recipes in mind when you head to the market will make it easier to select items. Here are some delicious in season chef-developed and kid approved summer recipes from the USDA:

Share your Farmer’s Market experience with us by posting to Twitter, Facebook or Instagram with the hashtags #DE4HealthyLiving or #FarmDE




Through the Grape Vine…

This is Healthy Habits with Kyle Merritt and today’s topic is Grapes. Grapes, also known as “the Queen of fruits”, are a kind of berry. They have a leathery covering and a fleshy inside, similar to blueberries. With more than 8,000 varieties, grapes are the most popular fruit.  Grapes…

  • Strengthen your bonesOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA
  • Reduce chance of heart disease
  • Help with your digestion system
  • Prevent exhaustion
  • Prevent Diabetes
  • Prevent cavities
  • Improve blood cholesterol
  • Prevent breast cancer
  • Prevent Alzheimer’s disease

Wow! Look at all the benefits of the grape. They are delicious, and healthy, so eat your great grapes!

1…2..3.. Help!

February is a big month for those in winter sports. Basketball is having it’s tournaments to determine the state champion, swimming and diving will have states, and wrestling will have their huge tournaments to determine the best in the region, state, and eventually nation.

Lose weight now

Time to start that diet

This week is national eating disorder awareness week, and with the end of the month quickly approaching we wanted to address wrestling’s secret.. eating disorders. It is commonly known that wrestlers on a weekly basis will either have to go up in a weight class or down, depending on where the coach wants them wrestling. If that is not bad enough, if they are over their weight class entirely they will eventually have to lose that weight and quick.

Wrestlers will eventually turn to purging or better commonly known as bulimia in order to lose the weight. Wrestlers also have a tendency to binge eat to gain weight, or to stop eating entirely to lose weight (anorexia). They have also been known to take diuretics or laxatives to clear the body of the food entirely. All of these are extremely harmful to the body, and puts wrestlers at a serious risk for heath related problems.

What isn’t being talked about is that when we develop an eating disorder, if we don’t get the help we need for it we might have that eating disorder for life. We have built an addiction, and our addiction is one that causes self harm. 4-H wishes you the best of luck in your tournaments but we want you to especially be safe, but we most of all want you to…EAT!

If you think that you or a friend may be suffering from an eating disorder click here. Or if you want more information about wrestling, weight cutting, and bulimia click here.


In a recent study it was said that 30 million people suffer from eating disorders. Women account for 20 million of that number (2/3) while men take up 10 million (1/3).

anorexiaEating disorders are “any of a range of psychological disorders characterized by abnormal or disturbed eating habits (such as anorexia nervosa)”. Basically that means the act of eating and then purging (vomiting) or abstaining from eating entirely.

Two common ones are bulimia nervosa more commonly known as bulimia, and anorexia nervosa or more commonly known as anorexia. Bulimia is the eating disorder that requires the individual to purge after they eat. By require I do mean the mental need to purge the body of the substance that they just ate entirely. Anorexia is the lack of abstaining from nutrition completely. The person will not eat or drink in order to lose weight. While in some cultures this may be considered as fasting, and is required for some religious holidays, anorexia is the act of eliminating food and drink 24/7.

While we may think we look better on the outside, what we do not see is actually what we are doing to our insides. With the lack of nutrition and water, you begin to not only lose fat but you will lose muscle as well. Your bones will eventually become weak, and brittle. You will feel fatigued, and your heart rate will slow to a dangerous rate to where heart failure is a major risk. If your body isn’t hydrated, or you haven’t had water for a long period of time you will suffer from severe hydration which will result in kidney failure. While you may think this will not happen to you, the chances that it will are extremely high.

The truth of the matter is, is that in today’s society the idea of perfection is painted across all media platforms (social media, magazines, television, movies) but perfection is always to good to be true. Most of the time those images that we see and aspire to be like are edited or entirely fake.

Just recently famous fighter Ronda Rousey came out about a photo shopped photo showing her on a late night television show, and how she was against it showing side by side photos between the real one, and the fake one. If that isn’t crazy enough, the celebrities that we aspire to be are suffering in there own way. Demi Lovato, and Ke$ha have come out and have stated that both had to be treated due to having had bulimia.

The fact of the matter is that we are all perfect in our own way. We all have our own talents that make us unique. We do not have to aspire to be perfect because we already are.

If you think that you are or a friend are suffering from an eating disorder, the best thing to due is to tell a trusting adult, or to talk to a physician. Don’t keep it inside, because if you do it might already be to late.

For more information on eating disorders click here.


Calling All Youth Bloggers!


Youth Voice Youth Choice is looking for youth, ages 13 through 19, to contribute to our blog between now and April 15th! blog-pic-b2c

We’ve got some suggestions on topics, like National Nutrition Month (March) or Alcohol Awareness Month (April), but we’d like to hear from you about any topic concerning youth and living healthy today! Even stories about something you’ve overcome are welcome!

In addition to the possibility of YOUR POST being published in our blog, we’re offering $15 Wal-Mart gift cards to the first selected 20 bloggers.

Any youth, any state, any healthy living topics! We want to hear about it!

If you’re interested, send your blog entry, along with your name, age, state, school district, phone, and email to:

Breanna Banks

VIEW THE FLYER: Youth Voice Youth Choice Blog Contest Flyer

National Drug Facts Week: IM40!

lg im40 yellow vectorIt’s National Drug Facts Week 2015, an annual week started and recognized by the National Institute on Drug Abuse. This week was a time to learn and reflect on how substances can affect lives. Today we talk Assets. Assets are things that you have that have value, like being a loyal friend, telling the truth even when it’s not easy, being good at math, and standing up for your beliefs. Assets are our strengths and they make us better. Everyone has Assets, and we can use them to share positive messages, prevent dangerous situations, and promote positive choices. And, everyone IS an asset! Your best friend is an asset, your parents are assets, and YOU ARE AN ASSET and an ASSET CHAMPION!

The Assets:

  • IM40 is a movement throughout Delaware. In all three counties, New Castle, Kent, and Sussex, organizations have been promoting IM40 and the , empowering youth to discover their Assets and teaching and encouraging adults to be Asset Builders for youth.
  • There are , and adults throughout the state have been working hard to develop opportunities for youth to increase their Assets. Some of these include Asset 7: Community values youth, Asset 14: Adult role models, Asset 28: Integrity, and Asset 40: Positive view of personal future.
  • IM40 has been a 5-­­year initiative around building  for youth and making Delaware a great place for youth to be resources and to really be engaged in their community. Throughout the state, there are over 40 Asset Champion organizations. This means they are committed to helping build Assets for youth.

The Asset Champion Organizations: Some organizations around Delaware where youth can build  include the YMCA, University of Delaware 4-H, Children and Families First, Kent Kids, DAPI, Boys and Girls Club, and many more.

To Delaware YouthYou don’t have to have all  to be successful, but the more you have, the better your likelihood of success. They simply help young people grow up healthy, caring, and responsible.

Whether your Asset is Family Support or Caring or Self-­­Esteem, you can share your Assets with others and they can share their Assets with you. Everyone can be a teacher and everyone can learn from someone else.

Let’s Review: An Asset is something you have that has value. Everyone has Assets. You are an Asset. You have value!

…And… your valuable self can help prevent and reduce drug use in Delaware! Be an Asset. It’s National Drug Facts Week 2015. Together, we can “Know the Facts! Shatter the Myths!”

(Teacher’s Tip: Refer to the IM40 Developmental Asset List at for the list of assets and to connect with the organization(s) that can help you learn/teach about Assets in your area.)