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Book teaches children healthy eating habits through entertainment

As an author and long term educator, Robert Orchanian relied heavily on his personal experiences when he came up with the idea for the VEDGE Kids project. The goal of the initiative, which stands for Vigorous, Educated and Good Eaters, is to instil healthy eating habits in children between the ages of two and five, and his book, titled The ABCs of Nutrition: Learning the Alphabet the Healthy Way, Volume 1, encourages those healthy habits while teaching children the alphabet as they are having fun.

“I'm a father of five,” said Orchanian, “and VEDGE Kids is a reflection of how I raised five healthy children.” He explained that kids under five years of age are in a highly formative state, so they're essentially metabolically programmed during that time to eat the food they will crave for the rest of their lives. Because that age is so important, Orchanian stressed that it's essential to make eating fruits and vegetables a fun and tasty thing for children early on.

“We felt we needed a different approach to get kids to eat healthy, so we went for something that's fun and entertaining, as opposed to something that's fact-based,” said Orchanian. The ABC’s of Nutrition introduces each letter of the alphabet with a VEDGE’ Kid and a colourful illustration of a fruit or vegetable. Drawing on his experience as a teacher, Orchanian also focused very much on the details of each page of the book tailoring it to the learning needs of toddlers.

“We paid close attention to the sizing of letters and counters, for example, because toddlers see letters and form words in a special way” said Orchanian. “We also spent a lot of time collaborating with our illustrator over the details of each of the VEDGE’ Kids so toddlers would be drawn to them. Andrew is extremely talented and is now a lead illustrator of Angry Birds. We wanted fun, colour and energy and that’s what he gave us.” Orchanian is sure the book, which came out in September and is available through Amazon and Barnes & Noble, will set kids on the right path in terms of eating habits.

“The idea is to get children to eat healthy at the earliest possible age,” said Orchanian. “And we feel we have a unique approach to accomplish that with this book.” 

On the business side, several online organic home delivery companies are now using Orchanian’s book as a premium. “Companies whose customer base are mothers, see The ABCs of Nutrition: Learning the Alphabet the Healthy Way was a great way to say thank you during the holiday season. Mums want their kids to eat right and grow up healthy. The ABCs of Nutrition helps make the connection. Those companies see it as something that’s special. It’s a way for companies to distinguish themselves and build good will in a crowded market place.” Orchanian is also in early negotiations with one of the companies to license the VEDGE’ Kids. “Branding one’s product with recognizable cartoon characters is a winning tactic in the marketplace.” Orchanian says to stay tuned. “There’s a lot more to come!” You can see an electronic version of The ABCs of Nutrition: Learning the Alphabet the Healthy Way, Volume 1 at:

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