Roswell Independent School District third-graders earned the most Healthy Kids Challenge medals in New Mexico last school year, Gov. Susana Martinez announced Tuesday.
Of the 580 children who successfully completed the Centennial Healthy Kids 5-2-1-0 Challenge, RISD had the most students compete and complete the challenge. Martinez awarded 104 RISD students a medal.
“I am pleased that in the first year of this initiative close to 600 New Mexico third-graders successfully completed the challenge,” Martinez said. “The children who completed this challenge are on a path to a healthier lifestyle.”
The three-week challenge included asking students to eat five fruits and vegetables every day; limit television and computer use to two hours a day and use the extra time for reading books or learning new hobbies; get a least one hour of physical activity a day; and to drink plenty of water every day.
Department of Health data shows that more than 14 percent of state kindergartners and about 21 percent of third-graders were obese in 2012, revealing a significant increase in childhood obesity between the age groups, according to the DOH.
“Shaping healthy behaviors for our children is extremely important,” said DOH Secretary Retta Ward. “Small changes in diet and exercise can have a significant impact on health.”
The DOH is targeting prevention strategies through a federally funded community transformation grant in 10 counties and four tribal communities with Healthy Kids New Mexico.