5-2-1-0: What do these numbers mean?

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5-2-1-0: What do these numbers mean?

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You don’t have to look very long to find advice online about how to live a healthy life. With all of that information, it can be difficult to know what you should do. That’s why Blank Children’s Hospital and several other organizations across Iowa – the Iowa Department of Public Health, United Way of Central Iowa and the Healthiest State Initiative – are promoting the 5-2-1-0 Healthy Choices Count campaign. 

5-2-1-0 Healthy Choices Count is an easy-to-use guide to encourage healthy eating and active living for children and families. What do the numbers actually mean? 5-2-1-0 promotes the following daily recommendations:

  • 5 or more servings of fruits and vegetables. A diet full of fruits and vegetables provides vitamins, minerals and nutrients. These are essential for supporting growth and development, and building immunity.
  • 2 hours or less of recreational screen time. Screen time includes time spent on TVs, computers, gaming consoles/handhelds, tablets and smartphones. It’s important to limit the use of ALL screens for non-educational purposes.
  • 1 hour or more of physical activity. One hour of moderate physical activity means doing activities where you breathe hard, like fast walking, hiking or dancing.
  • 0 sugary drinks. The best drinks for kids are water and milk. Drink plenty of water throughout the day to keep your body running smoothly. 

We know that children with healthy habits are less likely to have chronic medical conditions, such as obesity, diabetes, liver disease and cardiovascular disease. They also learn better and feel better! 

The goal is that you will start seeing 5-2-1-0 Healthy Choices Count campaign throughout our community, including at school and the doctor’s office. We’ll be sharing information online and through social media (follow Blank Children’s on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest) through the All Kids Healthy 5-2-1-0 program presented by Kohl’s.