CATCH Healthy Habits

August 31, 2011  • 

CATCH Healthy Habits is a unique intergenerational physical activity and nutrition
program that benefits two generations: kids and adults age 50-plus. The program combats obesity by engaging adults as mentors to teach healthy lifelong habits to kids in grades K-5.

Created by research teams from the University of California at San Diego, University of Minnesota, Tulane University and the University of Texas, CATCH Healthy Habits enlists teams of volunteers to work with kids in after-school or summer school programs. Each one hour session includes a nutrition lesson, a healthy snack and 30 minutes of fun, vigorous physical games and activities.

The results are impressive! Children:

• reported eating more servings of fruits and vegetables
• improved their knowledge of the daily recommended servings of fruits and vegetables and read food nutrition labels more frequently
• decreased the number of TV shows or movies watched and video games played each week
• were more confident that they could participate in physical activity three to five times per week, participate in physical activity in after school programs, run or bike during the week and run at a steady pace for at least 15 minutes

Plus, the adult mentors benefit, too! Adults:

• increased their vegetable consumption and are more likely to read nutrition labels
• report greater functional abilities
• find fulfillment in meaningful volunteer service

The program is continuing to expand nationwide. Current and planned cities include Atlanta, GA, Escondido, CA, Long Beach, CA, Los Angeles, CA, San Diego, CA, Indianapolis, IN, Saint Louis, MO, New York City; NY, Richmond, VA, Denver, CO, Madison, WI, Las Vegas, NV, Albany, NY, Hartford, CT, Louisville, KY, Portland, ME, Manchester, NH and Cleveland, OH.

Find out how you can connect with a CATCH Healthy Habits program in your community!