Nutrition Education Activity Training
What is N.E.A.T.?
N.E.A.T., or Nutrition Education Activity Training, is a program designed to teach and promote healthy eating behaviors among youth in Knox County. N.E.A.T. began as an initiative to combat childhood obesity and now reaches more than 1,000 children in afterschool sites. During the school year, trained volunteers lead interactive discussions and games centered on healthy eating and physical activity. Children also taste test healthy foods as part of the lessons.
Seeking to enhance the N.E.A.T. Program and create healthy environments, KCHD and local after-school programs developed the N.E.A.T. Approved designation. This designation requires after-school providers to incorporate environmental policy changes at their sites that promote healthy eating and physical activity. The Knox County Health Department is excited to debut the new N.E.A.T. Approved tier system! Beginning August 1, 2015, eligible afterschool sites will be designated N.E.A.T. Approved Gold, Silver or Bronze depending on their level of achievement of the environmental policies related to nutrition, physical activity and special events. Parents are encouraged to get involved at their child’s afterschool program to help plan and participate in N.E.A.T. Approved Family Involvement events that include delicious N.E.A.T. Approved foods and fun games and activities for all ages!
N.E.A.T. Approved Policies
N.E.A.T. Approved snack criteria:
- Minimum – maximum calories: 150 to 300
- Saturated fat (% of total calories): <10%
- Percent calories from total sugar: ≤35% (Exceptions: Fruit with no added sugar and yogurt can have up to 30g of sugar)
Specific beverage guidelines:
- Fat in milk products: Fat-free (skim) Low-fat (1%) milk, yogurt and cheese
- Juice specifications: Only 100% juice
- Amount of milk served per snack in ounces: 4-8 oz.
- Amount of juice served per snack in ounces: 4-8 oz.
- 100% juice and flavored fat-free or flavored 1% milk can be served no more than a total of 3 times per week
*N.E.A.T. Approved meal criteria:
- Minimum – maximum calories: 550 – 650 calories
- Saturated fat (% of total calories): <10% of calories
- **Sodium (mg): ≤1230
*Criteria based on a weekly average
**Sodium will reduced to USDA FNS Target 2, which is less than or equal to 935mg, by school year 2017-2018. Sodium will be reduced to USDA FNS Final Target, which is less than or equal to 640mg, by school year 2022-2023.
Physical Activity Policies
15 minutes or more of physical activity offered per hour
10-14 minutes of physical activity offered per hour
5-9 minutes of physical activity offered per hour
- Physical activity includes any physically active video games, such as Wii Fit
- Physical activity is not allowed to be used as a punishment
- The Program Site will host at least ONE family event per year to promote healthy eating, physical activity and being N.E.A.T. Approved!
Special Event Policies
- A special event is defined as any non-routine event, such as a party, that is hosted by the site
- Such an event must follow the above nutrition policies and food provided must meet N.E.A.T. Approved snack or meal criteria
Websites and Other Resources
- “GO,SLOW, WHOA” food list
- MyPlate website
- MyPlate Community Toolkit
- MyPlate’s Healthy Eating on a Budget resource
- USDA’s recipe finder with a database of low-cost, easy to prepare recipes following the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans
For more information about N.E.A.T. in Knox County, contact us here.