The YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City and the Oklahoma City Community Foundation are working together to improve the health of residents in central Oklahoma through OK5210, a program that encourages individuals to adopt four numbers into their daily lives:
- Five servings of fruits and vegetables.
- Two hours less screen time.
- One hour of exercise.
- Zero ounces of sugary beverages.
The YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City launched OK5210 in 2012 through funding provided by the YMCA of the USA. The 5210 logo and tagline, “numbers to live by” was market tested and well received by the community as a positive and inspiring message around healthy living. In 2013, the Y launched OK5210.org, a website serving as a central community resource for programs, organizations, and events that support the 5210 message within Oklahoma County.
The OK5210 initiative is modeled after one of the most successful and award winning programs in the nation called “5210, Let’s Go!” Based on a framework of evidence-based health behaviors associated with healthy weight adults and children, the “5210, Let’s Go!” program has reduced childhood obesity in the State of Maine by 1.5% in just three years. The US Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has targeted these behaviors as priorities for obesity prevention and control. OK5210 and related slogans are now used in over 45% of US health campaigns to promote healthy lifestyles and prevent childhood obesity.
While the Maine program has been targeted for the benefit of school-age children, OK5210 has guidelines and tips for families, schools, out-of-school programs, worksites and churches. To help address the rise in childhood obesity rates, OU Children’s Physicians is using the OK5210 framework as one of its tools to help pediatric healthcare providers educate children and their parents on healthy lifestyles.
Oklahoma City Community Foundation awards grant to assist with implementation, promotion of OK5210
The Oklahoma City Community Foundation has also adopted the OK5210 numbers into its Wellness Initiative grant guidelines that requires grant recipients to include at least one of the four principles as part of its funded program. Through the Wellness Initiative, the Oklahoma City Community Foundation is supporting programs that integrate physical activities, good nutrition and overall healthy lifestyle choices into the daily routines of children and adults living in Oklahoma County.
“We believe that OK5210 provides tangible, reasonable steps for just about anyone and complements the goals of our Wellness Initiative,” says Nancy B. Anthony, president, Oklahoma City Community Foundation. “The increase in childhood obesity combined with the poor health rankings for our community is alarming. We believe the simplicity of OK5210’s message makes the opportunity to develop a healthy lifestyle seem possible. And partnering with the YMCA, we believe we can make an impact.”
“Replicating the success that the state of Maine has achieved in reducing obesity will take a collaborative effort among all sectors of our community,” said Angela Jones, Director of Health and Wellness Initiatives at the Y. “The support the Oklahoma City Community Foundation is providing to multiple organizations to synergistically encourage and promote the OK5210 message through their Wellness Initiative is vital to our ability to transform health behaviors for all Oklahomans.”
Metro Technology Centers School District No. 22 to help expand the district’s “MetroFit Wellness Community Outreach” that is open to the surrounding community for physical activity and nutrition education.
Oklahoma City County Health Department to help expand the “Total Wellness,” an existing eight-week program that provides wellness education and support to overweight adults. The expansion will include youth in schools and other locations throughout the community.
Oklahoma City Indian Clinic to help implement “POWER Through Nutrition,” a children/youth fitness program that targets American Indian children who are among the highest risk population for obesity, diabetes and related diseases.
Schools for Healthy Lifestyles to help implement the “Get Active” program at three elementary schools. The program features two approaches to measuring activity: one will feature a walking program tracking system using pedometers and the other will utilize heart rate monitors to encourage physical activity among the students.