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Get to Know 5-2-1-0

Get to Know 5-2-1-0

Frederick Regional Health System is a proud partner of LiveWell Frederick. This partnership of businesses, faith-based groups, educators, community groups, and health organizations is dedicated to achieving long-term health improvement right here at home.

LiveWell Frederick helps the entire Frederick County community to develop healthy lifestyle changes, including eating healthier foods and being more active. It’s these small changes that not only reduce obesity and chronic diseases but also establish a culture of health for future Frederick County generations.

One of LiveWell Frederick’s core programs is 5-2-1-0. It’s designed to help you and your family grow stronger, smarter, and healthier together through small but effective changes. The 5-2-1-0 program is an easy way to focus your efforts on a few positive, healthy steps at a time for long-term success.

Here’s How It Works

There are four healthy living guidelines in the 5-2-1-0 program:

5 – EAT 5 or more fruits and vegetables every day.

Eating fruits and vegetables is essential because they provide vitamins and minerals, and most are low in calories. Choose fresh, frozen, or canned, and eat fruit instead of drinking fruit juice, which is packed with added sugar. Brighten your plate with vegetables rich in color—red, orange, or dark green. These are full of vitamins and minerals. Try acorn squash, cherry tomatoes, or collard greens. Cut up a batch of veggies and enjoy them in a casserole, stir-fry, or as a snack with hummus. There are so many ways to add more vegetables to your day.

2 – LIMIT screen time to 2 hours or less per day.

Excessive screen time can harm your health, especially your children’s, leading to higher risks of obesity and even disrupting sleep. One study by the Cleveland Clinic found that early exposure to screen time impacted development for preschoolers, and not in a good way. Early exposure to screen time at 2 years was predictive of lower development outcomes at 3 years, and increased screen time exposure at 3 years was related to decreased developmental outcomes at 5 years. That’s why children under the age of 2 should have no screen time, and there should be no TVs, computers, or games where you or your family sleep.

1 – PLAY or be physically active for 1 hour or more every day.

Physical activity is so important for children and adults of all ages. Regular exercise improves overall health and wellness and reduces your risk for many chronic diseases. Did you know 6 in 10 U.S. adults have a chronic disease? But only half of adults get the physical activity they need to help reduce and prevent chronic diseases. For children, regular exercise reduces risk of depression, improves aerobic and muscular fitness, and improves attention and behavior. Being active as a family can benefit everyone. Choose toys and games that promote physical activity. Make family time active time! Here are a few tips to get you started.

0 – STOP consuming sugary drinks.

A healthy diet doesn’t just include food—it includes healthy beverage choices, too. Many beverages contain added sugars and offer little or no nutrients, while others contain too many calories from saturated fat. Opt for 0 sugary drinks and reach for water and 1% milk instead. Fill a clean, reusable water bottle and toss it in your bag or briefcase to quench your thirst throughout the day. Rethink your drink at the coffee shop, too—consider downsizing your order, shift from whole milk to low-fat or fat-free, and skip the whipped cream.

Resources for 5-2-1-0 Success

Are you ready to commit to 5-2-1-0? You don’t have to navigate these guidelines for healthy habits alone. Check out these resources for more information and easy, manageable tips for success.

Interested in learning more about 5-2-1-0 or becoming a LiveWell Frederick community partner? Visit