BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - Access to healthy food is not as common as some parents would like, but Ikea and local organizations are hoping to change that at Cal State Bakersfield promoting a healthier lifestyle for kids.
According to a CSUB study, more than 60 percent of Kern County is considered overweight or obese as of 2014. The Healthy Kids Carnival aims to develop good habits to lower that number earlier in life.
The Cal State Bakersfield Children's Center was filled with kids of all ages getting their faces painted, and taking part in sack races. But those activities were just part of the fun.
"Children need to learn at a young age how to eat healthy," Brittany Conner said.
A farmers market took play money in exchange for healthy foods like organic carrots and apples. Children were also able to plant their own vegetables to take home.
"i know that my daughter just wants McDonald's all the time and i have to tell her, you know, no, you know, because when you grow up it's going to catch up with you," Conner said.
Kids seem to be getting the message loud and clear.
"It makes you big and strong," Conner's daughter, Italia Mortantini, said.
According to the website, kidsdata.org, as of 2015 nearly 45 percent of 7th graders in Kern County are overweight or obese. Fun activities like bounce houses encourage kids to keep moving.
"It is fun to be healthy," Mieshia Nunez. "It's fun to eat good. and there's a lot of kids just like him who love to have a good time and get together."
Organizers say they hope parents left feeling they can help their kids stay healthy easily at home and not just at the event.
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