New kids health app aims to decrease childhood obesity and bullying


A one-of-a-kind app based on an award-winning book contains an inspirational children's story, along with games, informational tools, resources and recipes to encourage kids to eat healthier and lead a better lifestyle.

Child health advocate Merilee A. Kern, author of the award-winning, ground-breaking children's book, "Making Healthy Choices – A Story to Inspire Fit, Weight-Wise Kids" announced the release of the  Kids Making Healthy Choices app

Being the first of its kind, the app is intended to motivate and empower overweight and obese children to get, and stay, on a healthy track while also supporting and enabling parents, teachers and other caregivers and educators with helpful resources.

"Unfortunately parents tend to be reactive to childhood obesity, dealing with the problem after it manifests, rather than proactive with a preventative mindset," said Kern.  "Many parents don't know how to communicate with children who may be dealing with weight issues." 

The app, which is designed for both iPhones and iPads, also serve to motivate kids within a healthy weight range to continue making wise lifestyle choices. The content also promotes a mutual understanding among kids and empathy for those struggling with weight issues, which can lessen the all-too-common incidence of bullying in schools and elsewhere.

"While shelves are filled with books that help parents manage their child's weight and related health concerns, there are decidedly few illustrated fictional story books or apps available that directly educate and inspire children to live a healthy lifestyle," said Kern. "So I wanted to take that alternate approach to address the issue directly in a way kids could identify with and relate to. The added mobility and interactivity of an app, combined with the additional resources, make this resource hugely appealing and helpful for kids and adults, alike."

In total, the app features six distinct value added sections:

Powerful Award-Winning Children's Story: This app includes the complete digital eBook adaptation of the award-winning, illustrated children's paperback "Making Healthy Choices—A Story to Inspire Fit, Weight-Wise Kids." The app provides both the boys and girls edition of the acclaimed book to assure the story resonates with the young reader to the greatest extent possible, helping him/her identify with the main character's struggles and ultimate achievements, while motivating them to do the same. This is a story of empowerment that engages kids with a voice and perspective that resonates.

Story Discussion Question Prompts: Adults are also encouraged to read this eBook, either with their youngster or separately, so they can key in on those specific scenes and scenarios that resonate with the child. To help facilitate important discussion between caregivers/educators and children, the Kids Making Healthy Choices app comes complete with Boy and Girl-version question prompts that directly relate to the story, offering a non-confrontational method of establishing communication on this vital subject.

Fun Activities:This app also contains gender-specific, health-themed game and activity sheets that include a healthy food crossword puzzle, maze, word scramble, letter shuffle and connect the dots.

Healthy Kid-Friendly Recipes: The Kids Making Healthy Choices app features a recipes section that contains an assortment of kid-friendly food and drink items that are offered by category: breakfast, lunch, snack, dinner, side, dessert, beverage and ‘all recipes.' To enhance user-friendliness, the Recipe section is alphabetized, keyword searchable and has a "favorite" bookmark feature.

Free Online Tools and Resources: Not just an app for children, Kids Making Healthy Choices also includes a caregiver/educator quick reference hotlink list consisting online tools that can help foster fit kids, including numerous internet calculators, online quizzes, interactive games, videos and even other useful kids' health apps that are available.

Research, Information and News: In a further effort to streamline the provision of helpful resources for caregivers/educators, this app also contains a list of news headlines, important statistics and findings, information sources, helpful programs and more.

Future plans for the Kids Making Healthy Choices app include the addition of a deals section allowing national corporate sponsors and advertisers to offer app users price-reduction promotion codes and printable discount coupons on goods and services that foster kids' health and wellness.

"Simple and to the point, this book provides the framework for opening up lines of communication between parents and their overweight children," said Dr. John H. Sklare, Ed.D., Author of "The Inner Diet." "It does a wonderful job of portraying an average overweight adolescent as he encounters - and ultimately triumphs over - the overwhelming amount of commercial, organizational and social stimulus that, on both a conscious and subconscious level, adversely affect his lifestyle choices. A real value for the health conscious parent! "

Learn more about the app as well as the book online at: www.KidsMakingHealthyChoices.com/theapp.html.