In 2007, over 70% of adults in St. Kitts were over the recommended healthy weight (STEPS survey 2007) and the risk of adult obesity is greater in obese children. At the Ministry of Health, we recognized that unhealthy children are at a higher risk of becoming unhealthy adults.
As a result, the Ministry of Health and Gender Affairs has partnered with the Ministry of Education to teach children techniques to promote good health. The MyHealthyPlate program teaches students how to maintain a healthy lifestyle by developing healthy eating habits at an early age.
This campaign targets grade 4 students and repeats each term with the same students over three years. Each term, a new topic will be covered. This term (January – April 2019), we taught the children about food groups and portion sizes. We will also monitor how their body mass index (BMI), which is a ratio of height and weight, changes over three years.
To culminate this term’s activities, we are hosting a Junior Chef Competition in collaboration with the Ministries of Health and Gender Affairs, Education, Agriculture, and the Taiwan ICDF. For the competition each school will submit a pre-made healthy snack to be judged on competition day. The schools will also send two students and a parent to participate in a live cooking contest on Monday 15th April 2019 from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm.
* List of sponsors for MyHealthyPlate Junior Chef Competition:
Ministry of Agriculture
Nevis Tourism Authority
Oualie Beach Resort