CSIRO Wellbeing Plan for Kids

The CSIRO Wellbeing Plan for Kids is a book for all families with young children, it contains practical information for parents to use to positively influence children’s eating and activity habits.

About the book

As parents, we want the best for our children, for their health, education and safety. In addition, children have their personalities and preferences, that influence what they like to eat and do.

The CSIRO Wellbeing Plan for Kids is designed to provide ways that you can positively influence your child's eating and physical activity habits.

It is a book for all families wanting to lead a healthier life and teach their children healthy habits that they will take with them into adulthood.

The CSIRO Wellbeing Plan for Kids provides a step-by-step plan for families to make healthy changes to their eating and activities and includes information on:

  • what healthy habits to prioritise for happy, healthy children
  • how to manage the challenges of raising healthy children
  • how to motivate your family to make changes that can last.

This book is for all Australian families to help our children on the road to a lifetime of good health.

Why children’s health?

In 2007 the CSIRO was involved in undertaking the first national survey of Australian children’s eating and activity habits in over a decade.

The survey found that children across all ages are not eating enough dairy foods, fruit and vegetables and wholegrain cereal foods for good health and are consuming too much saturated fat, sugar and salt. As children get older they are also less active, sleep less and watch more television.

These findings remind us of the need for healthier lifestyles by establishing good eating habits and enjoying an active lifestyle. What better time to start than in childhood – healthier children now and healthier adults in the future.

Supporting parents to make the change to a healthier lifestyle

To find out what type of information parents would find most helpful we surveyed over 1200 Australian parents. Parents told us that knowing what food and activity children need is important but knowing how to encourage children to adopt healthy habits is what would really help.

The CSIRO Wellbeing Plan for Kids focuses on practical information that parents can use to positively influence their children’s eating and physical activity habits.

Translating science into practical information

A team of CSIRO researchers including dietitians, exercise physiologists and psychologists reviewed the scientific literature to inform:

  • What healthy habits to prioritise: The CSIRO Wellbeing Plan for Kids provides practical solutions to 8-key lifestyle habits so that parents can focus their efforts on habits that will together make the biggest difference to achieving a healthy and active lifestyle.
  • How to manage the challenges of raising healthy children: Children spend a significant amount of their time at home. Even as outside influences – childcare, school, friends, the media – start to take up more of a child’s day, the home remains central in children’s lives, whether they are 5 or 15. Home, therefore, is one of the key places where children learn what to eat and how to lead an active life.
  • How to encourage your family to make lasting changes: For each lifestyle habit, the book provides a step-by-step plan so that families can bring about healthy changes in simple and effective ways. Even small changes can make a big difference if they become lifelong habits.

We provide tips on how to set goals that are challenging enough but achievable along with strategies to help families get started. It is a flexible approach that families can adapt to their own circumstances and use to tackle one change at a time.

Buy the CSIRO Wellbeing Plan for Kids through CSIRO Publishing or at book stores.

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