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About Nutrition Notes

Michelle Albee Matto Nutrition Notes Blog offers insight, news and analysis on nutrition, as well as food labeling. The blog is written by Michelle Albee Matto, who worked in IDFA's regulatory department for eight years, most recently as assistant director for nutrition and labeling.

Michelle now works exclusively for IDFA as a nutrition and labeling consultant. Contact her at

Michelle is a registered dietician and holds a Master of Public Health degree from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and a Bachelor of Science degree in nutrition from Russell Sage College in Troy, N.Y. She is an active member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and the Society for Nutrition Education.

Nutrition Notes

Firing Up Physical Activity at School and at Home

Aug 12, 2013
Working in the food industry, we often look at obesity from a food perspective. But the other side of the energy-balance equation, dealing with exercise and physical activity, is just as important. People who don’t get enough physical activity are at higher risk of not only obesity, but also diabetes, heart disease, osteoporosis and depression. With school out for the summer, I’m really aware of kids’ physical activity. My boys are very active (rambunctious, some would say) and love to be outdoors, but even they can get easily drawn into spending more time than they should watching TV or playing computer games. A report from the Institute of Medicine (IOM) has highlighted the important role of schools in promoting physical activity among school-aged kids. Since children spend so much time at school, they need to be able to have time for activity while there. The report recommended that children get at least one hour of vigorous or moderate activity each day, with at least half of that time during the scheduled school day, including physical education, recess and other activities. Legislators in New Jersey have introduced a bill that would require schools to have 20 minutes of recess each day. So what can dairy companies do to support more physical activity for kids and everyone? Your company could join the Healthy Weight Commitment Foundation (HWCF), which offers grants to build playgrounds and runs the Together Counts campaign. IDFA is an associate member of HWCF. And your company could look for ways to support children’s activity—maybe sponsoring healthy family events like fun runs or providing packages that kids or families can take along with them as they go on a hike or for a swim. What does your company do to encourage healthy activity for kids and adults?

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