When you get home from school or work what do you do? Do you immediately turn on the television to help you unwind and then find yourself still there at bedtime? Studies show the average family spends 4-5 hours every day watching TV but only 35 minutes having a meaningful conversation.
In 1994, TV Turn-Off Week was started after concerns about the health, social and educational impact television viewing was having on our young people. During this week, kids and families pledge to turn off their TVs for the week and find out the wide range of possibilities open to them when the Televisoin is not a part of their lives. TV Turn-off week is a grassroots event endorsed by over 65 national organizations inducing the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the National Education Association. This Year Turn Off Your TV week is April 18-24.
According to http://www.tvturnoff.org/ . Life with less television:
• Helps to fight obesity – One American child in five is overweight, half of them severly so. Much of this problem stems froma combination of inactivity and poor eating habits. Turn off the TV and you will have more time to b e active, and none of youw ill be spending your valuable timewatching ads that entice you to eat high-fat, high-calorie, processed foods.
• See Less Violence – American children typically see 200,000 violent acts on TV by the time they reach 18, including 16,000 murders. 91% of children say they feel scared or upset by violence on television. Watch less TV- play games, read, do projects, or take walks – and your kids will hve more reassuring things to think about.
• Find Time For Your Family – More than 50% of American households have three of more TV Sets. The hours we spend watching TV translate into two full months in front of television each year – that’s nine years of watching television by the time you’re 65 years old. By watching less TV, you can take back some time to spend with your family.
• Save Money! – American children typically see 40,000 television commercials each year. Over ninety percent of the advertising budget of the toy industry is spent on TV commercials aimed at your kids. If you’[d like to decide for yourself what your family should spend and reduce the access that advertisers have to your children, turn off the TV.
• Help Your Child Prepare for School – School-aged children typically spend more time in front of the television than they do in the classroom. Children where the TV is usually on are significantly less likely to be ab le to read by age 6 than children in homes where the TV is not left on. Your preschooler doesn’t need to expect TV to be his or her entertainment.
If you are interested in participating in Turn Your TV off week here are some suggestions:
• Establish some regular TV-free nights. There are plenty of other things to do. And leave it to your kids to figure some of them out themselves. Have game nights and story nights. Work a family puzzle over a weekend.
• Keep family meals TV-free. Put on some music. Ask everyone to tell you what was the b est thing that happened to them that day, and why. Keep mornings before work and school TV-free.
Recipe of the Week
By Pamela Redwine
Almond-Crusted Chicken Strips
Canola oil cooking spray
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1/4 cup whole-wheat flour
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 large egg whites
1 pound chicken tenders,
1. Preheat oven to 475°F. Line a baking sheet with foil. Set a wire rack on the baking sheet and coat it with cooking spray.
2. Place almonds, flour, paprika, garlic powder, dry mustard, salt and pepper in a food processor; process until the almonds are finely chopped and the paprika is mixed throughout, about 1 minute. With the motor running, drizzle in oil; process until combined. Transfer the mixture to a shallow dish.
3. Whisk egg whites in a second shallow dish. Add chicken tenders and turn to coat. Transfer each tender to the almond mixture; turn to coat evenly. (Discard any remaining egg white and almond mixture.) Place the tenders on the prepared rack and coat with cooking spray; turn and spray the other side.
4. Bake the chicken fingers until golden brown, crispy and no longer pink in the center, 20 to 25 minutes.
Nutrition Per serving: 174 calories; 4 g fat ( 1 g sat , 2 g mono ); 66 mg cholesterol; 4 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 27 g protein; 1 g fiber; 254 mg sodium; 76 mg potassium.
Exchanges: 3 very lean meat, 1/2 fat
Recipe source: http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes/almond_crusted_chicken_fingers.html 
From EatingWell: https://mail.ext.msstate.edu/category/publication/magazine/august/september_2005" \t "1" August/September 2005, https://mail.ext.msstate.edu/category/publication/book/_eatingwell_healthy_hurry_cookbook_2006" \t "1" The EatingWell Healthy in a Hurry Cookbook (2006)
Provided by the Oktibbeha County Extension Service, for more information call 323-5916.