FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 14, 2010
Students at Alice Gustafson School in Batavia to Learn about Health, Fitness and Nutrition at Mini-Medical School
(CHICAGO) — Obese children and adolescents are more likely to become obese as adults according the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). In fact, one study cited on the CDC website found that approximately 80% of children who were overweight at the ages of 10 to 15 years were obese adults at the age of 25. Recognizing that teaching children to be responsible for their health will help them develop healthy habits as they grow older, the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) — in partnership with the Illinois Osteopathic Medical Society— will host a mini-medical school from 9 to 11 a.m. Wednesday, April 20, at Alice Gustafson School, 905 Carlisle Road, Batavia, Ill.
During the event, which is being held in conjunction with *National Osteopathic Medicine Week, osteopathic physicians (DOs) will teach first through third-graders the basics of staying healthy as the youngsters visit six mini-medical school stations. Accompanying the practicing DOs to provide interactive demonstrations and to talk about health will be a group of osteopathic medical students from the Midwestern University/Chicago College of Osteopathic Medicine (MWU/CCOM) in Downers Grove, Ill. AOA President Karen J. Nichols, DO, who is also the soon-to-be returning dean of MWU/CCOM will also help lead the program.
“The high rates of obesity in the United States show us that something must be done to help children develop healthy habits that will last a lifetime,” said Dr. Nichols. “If we can teach children to understand why they should choose an apple over a candy bar, that is one small step toward better nutrition and living a healthier life.”
The children will learn how to lead healthy lifestyles by engaging in activities like placing Velcro organ parts on an anatomy apron and handling medical equipment, such as a stethoscope. Youngsters also will view real X-rays in a lesson on bone health and play a game to decide what constitutes a healthier breakfast and lunch using the food pyramid as their guide. Interacting with physicians and some of the equipment used during a physical exam also might help cure a case of the nerves children sometimes get when visiting the doctor’s office.
To help remember the lessons they learned at the mini-medical school, participants will receive a workbook to take home. The workbook features fun activities based on the stations they visited, including matching medical instruments to the body parts they are used to check and their own copy of the food pyramid to help them make smart choices about eating healthy. In addition, each student will receive a certificate upon completion of the mini-medical school.
Advanced media registration is not required but it is recommended. Media can register with AOA media relations specialist Vicki Martinka via email or phone. All visitors to Alice Gustafson School need to check in at the main office upon arriving the day of the event.
*National Osteopathic Medicine (NOM) Week is April 17-23, 2011. NOM Week brings the osteopathic medical profession together to focus on one common goal— increasing awareness of osteopathic medicine and DOs in communities across the country.
About the American Osteopathic Association
The American Osteopathic Association (AOA) proudly represents its professional family of more than 70,000 osteopathic physicians (DOs); promotes public health; encourages scientific research; serves as the primary certifying body for DOs; is the accrediting agency for osteopathic medical schools; and has federal authority to accredit hospitals and other health care facilities. More information on DOs/osteopathic medicine can be found at www.osteopathic.org.
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