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 width=The month of September was dedicated to the fight against childhood obesity and a local organization has some tips for young students and parents.

National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month was geared to educate parents and kids alike to utilize healthier options in everyday life. Monica Nyman, with the St. Louis Dairy Council, explains the new My Plate guidelines is a great tool to educate kids about nutrition. She notes My Plate had taken the place of the Food Pyramid which several generations of children grew up with.

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My Plate encourages balance in every meal, which can illustrates the importance of each food group to one's daily intake. Nyman stresses each meal should follow the My Plate principals.

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Changes in one's diet can take time and shouldn't be rushed. According to Nyman, eating healthier can train a person's body to make the correct changes over a certain period of time. She cautions anyone wanting to become healthier not to go "cold turkey" all at once because that can be discouraging.

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Eating healthier also helps prevent life threatening issues such as heart disease and diabetes. Nyman stresses there can even be financial benefits to eating healthier, such as fewer healthcare costs and money savings at the grocery store.

For more information on National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, you can visit www.stldairycouncil.org.

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