Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity Program (NUPAO)

Childcare Active Living and Healthy Eating

New Empower standards are coming out effective January 1, 2013
New Empower Center StandardsPDF

Childcare providers are in a unique position to support and facilitate healthy eating and promote physical activity in young children. Feeding nutritious food everyday must be accompanied by offering appropriate daily physical activity and play time for the healthy physical, social, and emotional development of infants and young children. The early care and education setting is an ideal environment to foster the goal of providing supervised, age-appropriate physical activity during the critical years of growth when health habits and patterns are being developed for life. The overall benefits of practicing healthy eating patterns, while being physically active daily are significant. Physical, social, and emotional habits are developed during the early years and continue into adulthood; thus these habits can be improved in early childhood to prevent and reduce obesity and a range of chronic diseases. Active play and supervised structured physical activities promote healthy weight, improved overall fitness, including mental health, improved bone development, cardiovascular health, and development of social skills.

Preventing Childhood Obesity in Early Care and Education Programs, Caring for Our Children: National Health and Safety Performance Standards; Guidelines for Early Care and Education Programs, 3rd EditionPDF

Lets Move! Childcare

Let's Move! Child Care
A new initiative through Let's Move to work with child care providers and parents to help get our youngest children off to the healthiest start. Visit the Healthy Kids Healthy Future website.

Empower Program
Through the Empower Program the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) is working with childcare homes and centers statewide to promote "10 ways to Empower Children to Live Healthier Lives". Visit our TheEmpowerPack.org website for more information.

New Child Care Center Rules
Effective September 20, 2010, the Office of Child Care Licensing issued new rules for child care centers that incorporate healthier standards promoting healthy eating and physical activity. View the new child care center rules.

New Child Care Champions for Change Video Series
The ADHS Bureau of Nutrition and Physical Activity is pleased to present the new Childcare Champions for Change video series created in partnership with the Office of Child Care Licensing and the Office of Children with Special Health Care Needs. These videos support both the Empower Program and the center rules by providing guidance in child care support of breastfeeding, infant nutrition, family style meals, and physical activity.