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National Nutrition Month: Help Kids Develop a Taste for Healthy Eating

by Anita Gurian, PhD

March is National Nutrition Month

National Nutrition Month is a campaign that focuses on the importance of helping children and teens make healthy food choices and develop sound eating and physical activity habits. Estimates of the number of overweight children, ranging from a low of 13% to a high of 25-30%, have more than doubled since the early 1970s. This means that six million children could be at risk for current and future self-esteem and health problems. On the other side of the weight issue, an estimated seven million girls and one million boys have eating disorders. Early intervention and developing healthy eating behaviors are critical for children and teens who have extreme eating habits – those who are overweight as well as those who are restricting their food intake.

The following articles discuss ways to determine if a child is overweight or having other eating difficulties, the psychological meaning and prevention of these problems, and how parents can encourage a healthy body image and sound eating habits in children and teens. Possible interventions, including behavioral, medical and psychological components, are discussed.

Harris Obesity Prevention Project

The Harris Obesity Prevention Effort at NYU (HOPE) website offers a wealth of information on nutrition and healthy eating for families and professionals. HOPE’s mission is to fight childhood obesity with science. It is located at the Child Study Center, and draws faculty from CSC and throughout New York University.


Featured Articles


Developing Healthy Eating Behaviors

Eating Disorders

Preventing Eating Disorders

Understanding Childhood Obesity

Childhood Obesity: a Growing Problem

Childhood Obesity: The Effects on Physical and Mental Health

Adolescents and Body Image: What's Typical and What's Not

NYU Child Study Center Eating Disorders Service

The Eating Disorders Service at the NYU Child Study Center is dedicated to the prevention, assessment and treatment of eating disorders through education, research and therapy.


In an effort to promote awareness of eating disorders, our faculty are available for community outreach services to school personnel, health care providers and community organizations. Please call (212) 263-8861 for more information, or to schedule a speaker. Visit our Areas of Expertise page to learn about other topics we are available to present on.