Ararat - Kindergarten parents are being encouraged to add an extra serve of vegies to their meals as part of the Ready, Vegie, Go campaign designed to have local families, including children, eating more vegetables for better health.
Adding an extra vegie to your meal or snack is where healthier eating habits start and children at the Carey Street Kindergarten helped launch the campaign by planting vegies in their garden.
The Healthy Together Grampians Goldfields (HTGG), Ready, Vegie, Go campaign encourages people to plan ahead for quick and fast ways to add more vegetables, whether fresh, canned or frozen to their family's daily menu.
Less than 10 per cent of residents eat the recommended five serves of vegetables each day and this is a major factor in overweight and obesity rates in the local area.
Mark Johnston, chairman of Healthy Together Grampians Goldfields, said that the magnetic vegie plate given to every kindergarten child across the shire is to encourage parents to add an extra serve of vegies to meals and help set up kids with healthy eating habits for life.
"With summer round the corner a wide range of tasty vegies will be in season. Meals packed with vegetables give children all-important vitamins and minerals to help them learn and grow," he said.
"It's as simple as adding vegetables to what's already on the stove such as stir fries, pasta or while making sandwiches, and your family will be on its way to better health."
The Ready, Vegie, Go packs distributed through local kindergartens will provide families with information on adding extra vegies to the daily meal and tips to help with planning. The kits include:
A family pack distributed through local kindergartens which includes a fun, magnetic plate with vegie pieces for kids.
A meal planner, shopping list and fridge magnet.
Handy tip cards in selected local supermarkets.
The Ready, Vegie, Go campaign is part of a comprehensive effort by Healthy Together Grampians Goldfields to improve people's health where they live, learn, work and play and is a jointly funded initiative of the State Government of Victoria and the Australian Government.
For more tips and healthy recipe ideas visit www.grampiansgoldfields.healthytogether.vic.gov.au