10 Best Health & Nutrition Education Apps for Kids

  • Best Health and Nutrition Education Apps for Kids

Most parents today exercise some effort to limit the time that their children spend on internet enabled devices. Regardless these valiant efforts it is a fact that kids are connected and online more than ever before, with tools such as iPads being integrated into their school curriculum as a learning device. Embracing technology at the right place, time, and under parental guidance can be a very effective way to deliver valuable information to children. This is especially true when it comes to guiding them towards a healthier lifestyle. This week the Plant A Seed & See What Grows foundation is providing a few downloadable recommendations of mobile (smartphone, tablet) applications. These apps will not only walk your child through the steps towards better nutrition and exercise, they will entertain them in the process – a great way to motivate them into learning!

Ten Mobile Apps for Kids That Will Help Them Learn About and Appreciate a Healthier Lifestyle

1. Smash Your Food

What better way to engage your kids than by appealing to their most basic instinct to smash something? Factor in the fact that this app first teaches them about nutrition, slating the food candidates for destruction based upon excessive sugars, salts, and oils and you’ve got a winner. This app encourages children to read the nutrition labels of foodstuffs and make informed decisions to eradicate the unhealthy items from their virtual diet by pulling the smash lever for an extremely satisfying and gooey conclusion. (Food an’ Me – $2.99 iTunes)

2. Awesome Eats

This healthy-eating app pulls fun straight from the garden, teaching kids about the benefits of a colorful diet of fruits and vegetables, including recycling tips at the conclusion of each “meal”. However your kids don’t have to pack a penchant for gardening to have a blast while tapping away on this app. With over 60 progressively challenging levels, 70 plus characters, and hoards of garden-thieving birds to shoo away your kids will be enthralled while learning all about nutrition on the side. (Whole Kids Foundation – FREE iTunes)

3. Nicholas’ Garden

This app takes nutrition one step further by not only teaching kids about basic nutrition, but also about cooking processes AND shopping. A big part of navigating the world we live in while making healthy choices involves consumerism. This application lightly touches on the concept in an engaging manner so that children can make healthier, more informed choices themselves about food in their day to day. Beware, your kid will keep an eye on you when putting items in the shopping cart at the grocery store after a few games on Nicholas’ Garden. (AppMatrix – FREE iTunes/Android)

4. Eat-And-Move-O-Matic

The apt name let’s you know what this one is all about. This basic yet fun app developed for the Youth Voice: Youth Choice program in the U.S. simply takes foods commonly consumed by kids, provides the nutrition label breakdown, then recommends a fun physical activity w/time duration to burn off those calories. This application really takes the association between nutrition and exercise and puts it into a context kids can understand. (Learning Games Lab – FREE iTunes)

5. Fooducate

Kids get started with mobile apps because they see us as grown-ups doing it. They don’t always need the colorful bells and whistles to get engaged, preferring to feel more grown-up themselves when using an app. This is where Fooducate comes in. This app was designed for a more advanced audience but many older (6+) children enjoy using it because of the QR code scanning technology. Put your child in charge on your next visit to the grocery store by having them scan the barcodes of labelled food items. The app delivers a truer accounting of the nutritional breakdown of the goods, including healthier alternative recommendations. Your kids will absolutely feel empowered when armed with the Fooducate app. (Fooducate, Ltd – FREE iTunes/Android)

6. FitnessKids

Make physical activity even more fun for your kids with the FitnessKids app. FitnessKids animates 25 different exercises ranging between sports day classics such as the crab-walk and wheelbarrow to the challenges of a kazachok dance-off. Kids can play solo or with friends/siblings in “joust” mode. (Sanse Boulevard SL – $2.99 iTunes)

7. Gro Garden

Gro Garden creates an online atmosphere where kids can learn all about sustainable farming and gardening in very entertaining manner. Players feed Connie the Compost, the star of the show, and her mico-organism buddies. After feeding kids get to witness Connie and company produce fruitful soil which allows bountiful crops to grow faster, more nutritious, and tastier. The seed-to-table concept is at play as kids get to treat animals residing within the Gro Garden cottage with a nutritious meal of organic vegetables. Children are rewarded for their efforts as they progress through the game with virtual goodies and badges, instilling a strong sense of pride in their efforts. (Gro Play – $2.99 iTunes)

8. MotionMaze

Kids love this app which allows them to help protagonist Captain Mapp navigate a challenging series of puzzled mazes. However this is no fingertip controlled application. Young players need to get up off of the sofa to briskly walk, jog, and go through a series of movements to complete each game. Fun with the side-effect of physical activity. (DigiDo Interactive Inc – FREE iTunes)

9. NFL Play 60

While us grown-ups may sit around the tube during NFL/CFL season games there is no reason for your restless kids to be stuck doing the same. Let them enjoy the pastime concept while getting fit for the field themselves by participating in the NFL Play 60 app. Developed by the American Heart Association this app (recommended for ages 9-11) has players running, jumping, and dodging to collect coins and power-ups. Boys and girls alike are enjoying this NFL season inspired game that keeps them active 365 days a year. (American Heart Association – FREE iTunes/Android)

10. Discover Your Body

As your child uses a combination of any of the above apps they will consistently be given tidbits of information about how nutrition and exercise impacts their body. It simply makes good sense then, that they better understand the inner-workings of their own physical vessel. This is where the popular Discover Your Body app comes into play. This thorough application creates an interactive learning environment where youth learn about their muscles, skeleton, circulatory system, brain development, and more. It also addresses exercise to strengthen the core and the concept of nutrition as fuel. Discover Your Body serves as a perfect conclusion to a series of mobile applications that will put your kids on a path towards a healthier lifestyle. (ClearVision – $2.99 iTunes)