Toni the Healthy Eating Cart to encourage nutritious choices at museum

Every day, children and adults alike receive mixed messages about eating, such as spotting delicious-looking advertisements featuring unhealthy food options.

Toni the Healthy Eating Cart – a colorful, compelling golf cart, popular especially among kids – has joined the conversation to promote healthy eating choices. Toni displays decorations of fruits and veggies, along with a sign that spells out the message of nutrition: “You are what you eat.”

Toni, who was designed and decorated by students at The Michael E. DeBakey High School for Health Professions with guidance from art car artist Shelley Buschur, has delighted audiences of children in various events around town, including the Houston Art Car Parade. Toni is just one of the many educational initiatives within Baylor College of Medicine’s Office of Outreach and Health Disparities, part of NCI-designated Dan L. Duncan Cancer Center.

Museum experience

Looking to drive home messages of nutritious eating to your children (without loud discussions about veggies across the dinner table)? The OOHD will be bringing Toni and the Salad Lady, who will be vibrantly dressed in green, to The Health Museum in Houston, Sept. 28, as part of The Museum Experience.

“My experience from observing Toni at events is that because of her colorful nature, she is able to attract individuals of all ages, particularly children and their families,” said Dr. Maria Jibaja-Weiss, director of the Office of Outreach and Health Disparities. “They touch the lifelike fruits and vegetables, and some have their pictures taken. After all, how often do we get to interact with a cabbage head all dressed up with cherry earrings?

Baylor’s participation in the event will also be showcasing the interactive Sugar, Heart & Life multimedia game at the museum, which is an online educational resource that explains diabetes through one family’s journey.

The Health Museum will also have other lively activities, and general admission will be half off for the day.

See information about the upcoming Museum Experience and participating museums. Don’t miss the opportunity to meet Toni and the Salad Lady, and learn about the Sugar, Heart and Life program.

-By Jordan Magaziner

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