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Think Your Kid is Healthy? Ha!

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A new study says most kids stop to buy junk food on the way to school. Here are ways to make him stop.

girl eating junk food

No matter how health-conscious your child is, there is one factor that'll steer him off his diet: Whether or not he walks past a convenience store on the way to school.

According to a study of sixth and eighth graders conducted by Temple University and the Food Trust in Philadelphia, kids who walk past a corner store on their way to school sabotage their diets because they spent their cash on junk food.

Check out some of the results:

•69% of students buy foods or beverages on their way to school, spending an average of $3 a day per child.

•Kids say the three most common foods they buy are chips, soda and candy, in that order.

How can you nix the chances your kid will fill up on junk food on the way to class?

"Start by having an honest discussion with your kid," suggests mom logic contributor Dr. Cara Natterson. "Acknowledge that he passes these stores between home and school and encourage him to buy healthier foods or, at the very least, smaller serving sizes."

•"Second, encourage your child to save money for something else. Break down the math and show him $3 per day spent on junk adds up to $15 per school week - and $60 or more per month," she says. "He'll see his candy habit adds up quickly and that the money can be used for toys and other indulgences."

•"Also, give your child snacks for the walk to school," she suggests. "Stock up on baked chips or granola bars that satisfy his sweet craving, and put them into his backpack. You'll slash the odds he'll stop for sweets."

"Of course you could always not give him extra money, but teaching him now to make his own nutrition decisions will lead to a grown up healthy lifestyle," says Natterson.

next: Parents Livid After School Builds Cells for Unruly Kids
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