Get the junk out of school. Bill passes and we investigate.

Question: How much money does it take to up the health quotient of the food served in our nation's public schools and feed more low-income children?

Answer: $4.5 billion -- over 10 years.

Today, the Senate approved the "Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act" which seeks, among other things, to make food served in public schools more healthy.

Athletic-Minded Traveler has posted on this important topic before:

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Are you a healthy parent? Part Two: Way of Life. Be a role model.

This is a timely topic -- maybe because First Lady Michelle Obama has made it so. How can we be more healthy as families? It must start with us -- the parents.

In our first post, we cited some interesting statistics/anecdotes about healthy living.

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Are you a healthy parent? Do you encourage healthy living for your child? INTRO

There is no easy answer to this question; but there are two ways to try:
1. Be a positive role model for your children.
2. Educate your child about healthy living.

So what is healthy living? While I'd really like to rattle off a nice, succinct definition, I can't come up with one. It's too complicated! In my mind there are four general ways to think about healthy living:

Food
Exercise
Sleep
Way of Life

We will explore each of these in four parts over the next week.

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Do you drink soda or any other sugary drink

What if the cost of your favorite sugary treat went up by a few cents? Would this alter your buying habits?

I read last week that one strategy being considered to fund Obama's health care expansion is to tax soda and other sweetened drinks. As reported in the Wall Street Journal, a 3 cent hike/tax for any super sweet beverage could net $24 billion -- a literal drop in the estimated $1.2 trillion bucket needed for Obama's plan.

Arguing for the tax:
Proponents claim that higher prices will reduce consumption and therefore improve American's health.

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Active parents equal healthy kids

Ugh. More bad news on the kid front.

A recent study by the Journal of the American Medical Association demonstrates that once kids hit the teen years, physical activity drops significantly. Specifically the study suggests that less than a third of teens get even the minimum recommended daily amount of exercise -- ONE HOUR. And walking, playing, swimming, bicycle riding, all count. We're not talking about hardcore training.

Why is this significant?

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What is your definition of kid friendly?

Athletic-Minded Traveler primarily serves business travelers and other adults who want to stay active, healthy and fit when away from home, so the term "kid friendly" isn't part of our daily lexicon.

We sometimes note if restaurants and cafes have a kids' menu in the EAT WELL section of the site, and as parents a few of our past posts have come from this perspective.

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First Time Flying with a Baby

Last week, Erin and I flew for the first time with our 5-month old baby. Our annual trip back to Chicago for early xmas with the extended family was the occasion.

Both Erin and I were anxious about the 4+ hour flight as well as the 90 minute wait prior because, as first time parents, we just had no idea how Sevrin was going to handle the airport, security, the takeoff/landing, and the monotonous hours at 35,000 feet.

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Leading the young to fitness

This past Wednesday?s Journal of the American Medical Association reported that approximately one third of US teens could not pass a treadmill fitness test. The study suggests that this population may be at a higher risk for heart disease later in life.

There are loads of studies demonstrating the benefits of physical activity?from stronger cardiovascular health to improved mental well-being.

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