WQED mobile
close menu
Childhood Obesity: Shaping The Future

Childhood Obesity: Shaping The Future

WQED's Pittsburgh 360° and Horizons are proud to partner with Highmark to report on an important task at hand: shaping healthy lives for our children. An estimated 29% of Pennsylvania children are considered overweight or obese. This startling statistic and others have prompted the Pittsburgh region to make childhood obesity a top priority. By reaching out to children and reinforcing the steps to creating healthier futures, Pittsburgh is committed to making obesity a problem of the past.

Horizons Tuesday, March 22 at 7:30pm

The KidShape Program
Many local families are taking steps -- and leaps and kicks -- to combat childhood obesity. KidShape, part of the Highmark Healthy High 5 programs, is designed to help families engage in more frequent physical activity while adopting better nutrition habits. "Shaping The Future" introduces us to the people behind KidShape and a family that's benefited from the program.
Related Links:
KidShape - Get the facts! (pdf)
Click here to find a KidShape class near you! (pdf)
Childhood Obesity Discussion
Highmark Medical Director Dr. Rhonda Moore Johnson and pediatrician Dr. Joseph Aracri talk to host Chris Moore about childhood obesity, its causes, its cures and what parents can do to raise healthy and happy kids.

Watch Now

Click here to watch this episode.

Pittsburgh 360° Thursday, March 24 at 7:30pm

Winning The Battle at School
So often we think the biggest fight against childhood obesity happens at home. But consider the amount of time children spend in school! That's why Tonia Caruso takes viewers inside Gateway Middle School where some innovative programs are underway - from the classroom to the cafeteria, to the gym. See how students are "winning the battle" against childhood obesity, because the school has added "healthier lifestyles" to its curriculum.
Related Links:
Pack Your Pick (pdf)
Ways to be Active (pdf)

Watch Now

Click here to watch this episode.

Additional Resources & Information


Healthy Families 1. Stay organized and have a plan. Planning healthy meals isn't any harder than chauffeuring kids to sports practice, attending school meetings, throwing birthday parties, helping with homework and going to club meetings.
2. Be a physically active family. The family that plays together stays healthy together.
3. Keep your food environment safe. Fruits and vegetables are a MUST for growth and development and good health... not chips, candy and cookies.
4. Ensure variety by providing variety. Try one new recipe or one new food item each week, but keep it simple and affordable.
5. Make it a family affair to plan meals. Choose food theme nights to make planning easy. Or assign meal duties to different family members each day.
6. Look for quick meal ideas that don't involve drive-thru or pizza delivery. Take advantage of pre-prepared food items and ready-to-cook meals. Or cook in bulk and cook ahead.
7. YOU be the role model for your children's eating habits… not the latest restaurant mascot or cartoon character. If you don't want your kids to have food hang-ups, then get rid of yours. If you want your kids to eat broccoli, you have to eat broccoli. Play by fair rules when it comes to family 'food fights.'
8. Allow for taste variances but establish some rules and expectations. Provide a variety of choices within each food group that doesn't require additional preparation.
9. What happens at Grandma's, stays at Grandma's. But if the kids go to Grandma's on a regular basis, then Grandma (or Grandpa) might need to be informed of your healthy family plan.
10. Nourish with food. Nurture with love. Better health begins in the home.

Click here for more helpful tips for parents.

Winning at Losing (pdf)
Personal Nutrition Coaching (pdf)

featured specials

featured specials

Clubs, FAQ, Awards


Other Links

featured specials

WQED is proud to partner with Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield to cover important health topics. "Living With Mental Illness" explores diagnosis, treatment and ending the stigma associated with behavioral health issues. The "Men & Cancer" and "Women & Cancer" series reports on early detection and the latest treatment of cancers most commonly associated with men and women.


  • WQED first told her story in "Portraits for the Home Front." Now the legacy of Elizabeth Black continues in a new documentary.