Best Nutritional Apps for Children
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It is common knowledge that nutrition isn’t always a top priority for kids. They tend to gravitate toward sugary drinks and snacks that are full of empty calories and additives. If you are the parent of one or more children, that is more than a scary statistic for you. It’s a daily battle. If you want to increase your chances of winning the fight and keeping your kids healthy, you should take advantage of technology to help you. You should also use the fact that kids tend to love technology to your parental advantage. Below are some apps that can help you teach your kids the value of proper nutrition in a fun and interesting way.
Veggie Circus Farm
Veggie Circus Farm is a cartoon-style app for younger kids. Your child can be guided through the game by either Brian Bee or Brianna Butterfly. A series of mini-games are provided to help your child learn to recognize common vegetables by name. The app also explains a bit about why those vegetables are healthy and nutritious along the way. There are also a lot of fun facts provided about all of the vegetables that are mentioned in the app.
Smash Your Food
Smash Your Food was the winner of the “Apps for Healthy Kids” contest that was started by former First Lady Michelle Obama. It combines real-life videos with educational facts about nutrition for older kids. Children can enjoy smashing their favorite foods, such as pizza, hamburgers and cans of soda. As the foods are smashed, information about the salt, oil and sugar content of the smashed food is displayed.
Kids love to be destructive. The Smash Your Food app channels that love of destruction in a healthy direction. As your child smashes the different foods, he or she will learn the nutritional value, or lack thereof, that the food has. There is also a fun reward element and an ongoing level of usefulness to this app, because kids can unlock more food fridges the more they use the app.
Fooducate is a free app that is designed for people of all ages to learn about the foods they buy in the grocery store. Although it is not technically an app for kids, many parents use it to help kids who are about 6 years old or older to start to feel included in shopping trips. Kids can scan the bar codes of everything added to shopping carts using the app. Each scanned item will display the nutritional statistics for that food. The app can help kids to learn that two products that look similar, such as two brands of apple juice, may have completely different nutritional values.
This is my Food – Nutrition for Kids
This is my Food – Nutrition for Kids is an app designed for kids in early grades of elementary school. It uses interactive cartoon lessons, such as “rubbing” pictures to uncover hidden vegetables in flower pots. In addition, it shows children what healthy meals look like displayed on plates, and describes how those nutritious foods get from farms and gardens to plates in a simple, easy-to-understand way.
Eat and Move-O-Matic
Eat and Move-O-Matic is an app that your kids can use to learn that the foods they eat give them a certain amount of energy to perform their daily activities. The app matches up activities and foods. The calories in the foods are displayed under the picture of each food item. Similarly, the number of calories an activity burns and how long it takes to burn those calories is displayed with the activity’s picture. For instance, it might take more than two hours of playing video games to burn the calories in a serving of carrots, but it takes much less time to burn those same calories when doing something more active, like jumping on a trampoline or riding a bicycle.
The Eat and Move-O-Matic will help to encourage your kids not only to eat nutritional foods, but also to use that nutrition in an efficient way. It encourages kids to be more active and to participate in healthy exercises. It’s also nice, because, although it was specifically designed to be simple enough for kids, adults can also use it. Therefore, you can even use it with your child to keep both of you motivated to eat healthier and to exercise more.
Keep in mind that new healthy eating tips and general nutrition apps are being released all the time. If you want to keep your kids on the road to health and wellness, you need to stay informed when those new apps pop up, so don’t forget to check for new healthy eating apps geared towards children and families regularly in app stores like iTunes. Most of them are totally free, but even those that cost money usually only cost $5 or less.