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Study Suggests Fresno Summer Camp Promotes Healthy Lifestyles

Sara Hamilton
California Agriculture http://calag.ucanr.edu/archive/?article=ca.2016a0025
Students from the Healthy Lifestyle and Fitness Camp pose on the steps of Fresno City Hall

A new study says a Fresno-area summer camp may help children at risk for obesity adopt healthier lifestyles.

According to the study, families who participated in the Healthy Lifestyle and Fitness Camp in Fresno consumed more fruits and vegetables at home, and their children measured steady weight loss.

This was compared to kids who participated in non-nutrition themed summer camps. The study was published in the journal California Agriculture.

Gretchen George, assistant professor of San Francisco State’s Consumer, Family Studies and Dietetics Department is one of the study’s authors.

George says that the intent of the camp “was not to have dramatic weight loss, because six weeks is really short, but to have stabilization.

"We didn’t put them on a specialized diet, or even provide food, we just made it fun, made them feel confident and good about themselves and kept them really active over the summer.”

Campers received weekly lessons about nutritious food choices and preparation. They also participated in daily physical activities, like group sports or field trips. While the study assessed the camp from 2009 to 2012, the summer camp is still offered by the City of Fresno’s Parks and Recreation Department.

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