Praxis Think Tank and the University of Tartu will contribute in 2024-2025 as strategic partners of the Estonian Ministry of Social Affairs to study the promotion of exercise and healthy nutrition of children in schools and preschools.

Both a healthy diet and exercise are important for maintaining health and preventing various health risks and diseases. Among Estonian youth, physical activity is insufficient, and the situation with nutrition is just as poor. Estonian men and women stand out with their excess body mass index, which increases in correlation with age – the proportion of the population with normal weight decreases over the years. At the same time, in the case of school children, it has been observed that obesity is becoming more and more common and the eating habits of school children are poor.

Promoting healthy nutrition and exercise in childhood is essential so that the necessary skills, knowledge, and behaviors also support health in old age and thereby increase the number of healthy years of life and life expectancy. Both internationally and in Estonia, it has been studied what affects the movement and nutrition of children and young people, but there is a lack of knowledge about interventions that would address these factors and thereby shape behavior in a desirable direction. To effectively promote sufficient exercise and healthier nutrition in preschools and schools, evidence-based interventions must be relied upon and implemented successfully.

Feasibility is central to the effectiveness of evidence-based interventions. For this, it is necessary to carry out feasibility studies, the purpose of which is to find out if and how the interventions can be implemented in the best way. This is an important and cost-effective way to ensure the feasibility of interventions, find out adaptation needs, and also the involvement of the people themselves. The project aims to contribute to the long-term increase of balanced nutrition and regular exercise among children and young people by evaluating the applicability of evidence-based interventions.