Saint Louis University

Every now and then the Saint Louis University Dietetic Interns step outside of the hospitals and clinics to impact health and well being within the St. Louis community.

Last weekend was the 4th annual anniversary of Let's Move! STL, a program orchestrated by the City of St. Louis Department of Health and inspired by First Lady Michelle Obama's national Let's Move! The "So You Got Moves Expo" was held at the O'Fallon Park and Carondelet Park Recreation Complexes. Both locations included lots of free activities for the entire family to enjoy such as open gym, a golf simulator and high-energy dance classes.

So you got moves...

While the O'Fallon Park Recreation Complex was breaking a sweat with a Zumba lesson, SLU Dietetic Intern Morgan Schulte lead guests at Carondelet in the official Let's Move, Move your Body dance.

Morgan Schulte gets a group of interns and guests to move their bodies! Refuel with Healthy Meals and Snacks

Refuel with Healthy Meals and Snacks

In between exercises, guests were able to view cooking demonstrations. SLU Dietetic Interns, Victoria Glatz and Gabby Pruchno demonstrated how to make two, simple healthy pre- and post-workout snacks. Victoria's quinoa protein bites were kid-friendly and several little helpers were available to help roll them. Gabby's protein-powered veggie quesadillas made a great post-workout meal that is easy on the wallet ($1.87 per serving) and delicious. Samples were quickly snapped up!

Victoria Glatz and Gabby Pruchno field questions about pre- and post-workout nutrition.

Regional initiatives like Let's Move STL can make an impact

Let's Move! is a national campaign to combat childhood obesity. It is important to extend the message behind this initiative at a regional or even community level in order to make an impact. I spoke with Lauren Landfried, Nutrition Coordinator for the City of St Louis Department of Health and the Missouri Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Let's Move! Coordinator, and posed the question: What do you think sets the Let's Move! campaign apart from other initiatives to encourage healthier lifestyles for kids?"The Let's Move! STL initiative does a great job of incorporating strategies from the national Let's Move! initiative to address whole family health. Since its inception, the initiative has reached thousands of people from the St. Louis region and strives to reach even more in the upcoming years. Physical activity is an important component in achieving and maintaining overall health, and this initiative provides ways for people to get started and sustain the activities through different events and programs year round. While the anniversary event is held once a year, there are various ongoing Let's Move! STL sponsored activities throughout the year."

National campaigns are a great starting point to inspire change but it is necessary to use that momentum to create initiatives within each community to promote lifestyle change and then sustain that change with ongoing activities and events. Lifestyle change isn't a one-time event but a continual process!

The Let's Move! STL event was a great way for this group of future dietitians to support families within the community as they strive for a healthier lifestyle.

All Smiles at the Let's Move STL event at Carondelet Park Recreation Complex