1. 10 hours of sleep because . . . too little sleep may cause hyperactivity, shortened attention span, impulsiveness, and increased risk of physical and mental health problems (I.e., hypertension, diabetes, obesity, depression) (ParticipACTION, 2016).
2. 5 veggie/fruit servings a day because . . . Allows children to receive the nutrients (I.e., vitamins, minerals, and fibre) they need to grow and thrive. Veggie and fruit consumption can help to reduce the risk of chronic disease in the future (Health Canada, 2011).
3. 2 hours (or less) of TV/screen time because . . . Only 24% of Canadian children from the ages 5-to-17 years old are meeting the Canadian Sedentary Behaviour Guideline that suggests no more than 2 hours of screen time per day (ParticipACTION, 2016)
4. 1 hour of physical activity/play because . . . Physical activity is associated with benefits for cellular, systematic and behavioural levels of the body providing opportunity for healthy brain development. Currently, only 9% of children and adolescents ages 5-to-17 years old are meeting the recommended 60 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity per day (ParticipACTION, 2016).
5. 0 sugar sweetened beverages because . . . Water can satisfy thirst and reduce the number of calories uptaken. Water consumption will help prevent dehydration which can lead to fatigue, weakness, and irritability (Health Canada, 2011).
6. Mental health: our emotional, psychological, and social wellbeing because . . . It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make choices. Mental health is important at every stage of life, from childhood and adolescence through adulthood.
7. Financial wellbeing because . . . having income security, adequate finances for housing, dental and medical coverage and food security directly influence what you can eat, how you can be active, what you can focus on in terms of choosing housing quality, transportation, recreation, improving your health etc.
8. Successful and empowering parenting because . . . Greater encouragement and engagement from families can help to develop routine and confidence levels to increase participation (ParticipACTION, 2016) parents are the initial and primary role models for children. Parents teach coping skills, social skills, fundamental physical literacy skills as well as behavior management.