Great ideas for family summer wellness

June 16, 2008 12:00:00 AM PDT
Summer is here and that means that you and your children may have plans to spend a great deal of time outdoors. Wellness and lifestyle expert, Terra Wellington, shares her tips for how to be safe while enjoying the summer sun.

UVA & UVP protection

· The newest development in sunscreen is that as early as this summer, we will start to see some changes on our sunscreen labels. You can expect a new 4-star rating program to measure the amount of UVA protection that you are getting.

· The eyes, just like the skin, can be burned by the sun, and prolonged exposure to UV light may results in certain eye conditions such as macular degeneration and cataracts.

Tips:

  1. Protect your children's eyes - and this important because according to VSP Vision Care, parents are more than twice as likely to wear sunglasses than have their children wear sunglasses. So put sunglasses on your children.
  2. Wear 100% UV protected sunglasses - look for a sticker or label that tells you this
  3. And for prescription lenses, you can ask your eye doctor about Transitions lenses. These lenses automatically darken to guarantee you are wearing sunglasses when you go outside, and they also block 100% of the UV rays.

Hydration

Make sure you and your children drink enough water. For example, anytime you walk by a water fountain, take a drink. Make sure you drink water at the pool. And unless you're exercising vigorously, skip the high-calorie drinks and just choose water.

· Also, summer fruit can also help you get the water you need and it also provides additional nutrients like Vitamin C. For example, you can eat California peaches, plums, and nectarines to get your Summer C. And the good news is that these fruits are in season now through October -- they are sodium-free and packed with potassium and fiber, and peaches are almost 90 percent water.

Summer weight gain

Kids can gain up to three times more weight during the summer months than during the school year.

When it comes to summer snacking, make sure your kids have healthy options. Fruit, whole grains, and low fat options are good to have around.

· If you're looking for crackers or chips, a great choice is Sunchips because it is a multigrain snack that has 18 grams of whole grains and zero trans fats. This snack is also helping the planet, which is great news! At one of their manufacturing plants in Modesto, California they have started to use solar energy to help produce the snacks.

Fresh air

Encourage your kids to get fresh air. Make outdoor play mandatory. Tell them they have to get outside to play everyday. Grow a garden and have your family members plant their own rows and veggies. and eat outside -- this helps kids break away from the TV and helps them rediscover nature.

About Terra Wellington
Terra Wellington is a national wellness and lifestyle expert who reports on consumer tips and information for healthy living and the environment. She regularly appears on television and radio news programs across the U.S. Currently, she is a trusted health and wellness expert for ClubMom.com, which was co-founded by Meredith Vieira (anchor on NBC's Today). And she also writes healthy living content for Healthnotes, an organization that provides wellness information on the Web and in kiosks at your local supermarket.


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