Elmo and the "Super Foods" to the Rescue!

I just love Elmo. He's the furry, red friend to millions of preschoolers and their families---a star on Sesame Street. And now, Elmo is helping to bring nutrition education to that same audience. "Food for Thought: Eating Well on a Budget," is targeting the 15% of households in the United States that include children not getting the foods necessary to meet their basic nutritional needs because of economic difficulty. That's an estimated 9 million kids.

The Sesame Street Workshop is reaching out with this program by providing packets to these families which include a video featuring the "Super Foods:"  banana, cheese, whole grain roll, and broccoli---great new characters to meet. Viewers learn that there are "sometimes" foods and "anytime" foods, that it's OK to try new foods, and parents are provided help with suggestions of how to prepare healthy meals for little money. Elmo's video has the potential to help all families to start eating healthier, regardless of income.

This project certainly earns all my praise. In the U.S., it's now estimated that close to 40% of the calories consumed by children ages 2 - 15,  come from empty calories:  soda, sugary sweet fruit drinks, cookies, cakes, donuts....etc. Utterly amazing. It's no wonder childhood obesity rates are sky rocketing. Sesame Street Workshop's focus on both young children and their parents should increase the odds of making real changes in the eating habits of families.  Let's hope that using this media to get the message out will have an big impact on the health of every family. I say, bring on the Super Foods Team!

Let's hear it for Elmo!!!!  Yeaaaaahhhhh!!!!!