Myths and Misconceptions About Fitness, Food and Health

Have you tried the Atkins Diet? Maybe you’ve eaten grapefruit for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Then there’s the cabbage diet that, frankly, just sounds like a form of punishment.

As adults, we sometimes try crazy things to lose weight. And the “Diet Industry” knows that — there’s a reason it’s a billion dollar industry. We’re all looking for that quick fix. The problem is, often times our kids are too.

Maybe your teen skips breakfast (Myth #1) or drinks diet soda because she thinks it will help her lose weight. Maybe your son thinks exercise will work off that entire pizza he just consumed (Myth #19).

We all have misconceptions about what will help us lose weight, and even about what is really healthy (hint: just because something is labeled healthy, doesn’t mean it actually is. Myth #2.)

Judith Hilgers, RN, BSN, with UW Health’s Pediatric Fitness Clinic shares common myths about food, exercise and healthy habits and offers suggestions for what your kids (and let’s be honest, maybe even you) can do to make positive changes.

Learn more about 23 common food and fitness myths

Chocolate Raspberry Smoothie

Chocolate Rasberry Smoothie

It’s summer and parents may have to leave for work before the kids are up. Part of your child’s job should be to make a healthy breakfast (“the most important meal”)! This recipe is so tasty, kids will be excited about having it for breakfast, snack or dessert.

Chocolate Raspberry Smoothie

  • 1 cup chocolate hazelnut or almond milk (in the natural foods section in a box)
  • 2 Tblsp. Protein powder (in the natural foods section —choose either whey or soy protein)
  • ½ banana, fresh or frozen (bananas can be peeled, halved and frozen so they are always ready for smoothies)
  • ¼ cup frozen raspberries
  1. Place all ingredients in a blender and whiz! If too thick add milk or water to thin.
  2. Pour into a glass. Rinse out the blender right away.

Creating Fitness Traditions

A family tradition. Those words inspire a warm feeling. One of my favorite family traditions involves a bike ride that captures the essence of family, activity and our glorious Wisconsin northwoods.

As a young man I spent many summers as a camp counselor in northern Wisconsin. I developed a bond with kids and the northwoods. I love the sound of the loon, the northern lakes and the majesty of ancient pine forests. I wanted to share that same experience with my children.

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Summer Hazards: Ticks, Bug Bites, And a Burned Backside


I wasn’t much of an outdoors-kind-of-gal growing up in the ‘burbs of Chicago. So when I met my husband who was a flannel-wearing, hiking-booted Wisconsin boy (even at our wedding, but I digress) I did my best to pretend otherwise.

As he introduced me to the beauty of nature, I secretly panicked at the thought of all the ticks, mosquitoes and black flies just waiting to take a bite.

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Fun in the Sun

When you’re getting ready to leave the house, you always make sure you have your keys, your wallet or purse, anything your children might need — but do you make sure you also have your SPF on?

Early summer is a great time to review the the in’s and out’s sun protection and why it could be one of the most important ways you can protect your kids.

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