Christopher was trying to eat healthy, but it was harder than he thought. “One day, I asked Christopher if he ate any fruits or vegetables for lunch,” Christopher’s mom, Carolyn, says. “He replied ‘apple juice.’ I told him, ‘Christopher, remember how we’ve been trying to not buy or eat juice at home because it’s not healthy?’ He said ‘I thought apple juice was a fruit.’ He looked so sad and confused. He had clearly been trying hard to eat healthy.”
After a stressful school year, Carolyn decided Christopher deserved a change this summer. “Christopher had a teacher that was really rough on the class and I think it was hard on him. He was gaining a lot of weight and I was really concerned. I signed him up for Kurbo right after school ended.”
Christopher caught onto Kurbo right away and has since become a tracking expert. “He gets in the car and he says ‘let me have the phone so I can log everything!’ He’s very competitive,” Carolyn shares. “He even counts his brother’s reds. His coach, Monica, offered to give him a week off from tracking, and he refused!”
He even developed his own secret strategy for tracking that we’re lucky he shared with us. “It’s all about being wise with your red lights,” Christopher says. “If you get 28 red lights a week, then you get 4 red lights for every day. Pick out what you really like to use those red lights on. For me, it’s pizza at school (2 red lights). Then I can have 2 more red lights to use at home for a little dessert after dinner. So I plan to have breakfast and dinner full of green and yellow lights! Sometimes, when I know I’m going to go to the movies on the weekend, I’ll eat two less red lights during the week so I can have caramel popcorn at the movies.”
Carolyn can’t believe how Christopher is so aware of what he’s eating at just 8 years old. “I didn’t think at his age that he was going to be this good at tracking and budgeting the reds. I really didn’t think it was possible. His awareness of what’s healthy and what’s not healthy is incredible. Without looking at the app, he identifies which foods are reds and greens and he’ll explain to me why.”
Christopher’s tracking has paid off, especially in the playground. “The school playground got a rock climbing wall a few years ago, and in the past, he’s told me that he doesn’t think he is athletic enough to climb it. After doing Kurbo over the summer, he’s trying to climb the wall now. Before, he would just watch from the sidelines, but now he is much more involved,” Carolyn says. “I can climb halfway up now, which is super high!” Christopher shares.
His tracking has led him to become more curious and involved in the kitchen. “I’m talking with Coach Monica about ideas for a Kurbo yellow light cookie recipe,” Christopher says. “When I’m cooking he’ll ask, ‘what are you making?’ and ‘how many reds are you using?’ He’ll seize the food I’m cooking and taste it and say ‘it needs more seasoning!’ and then he’ll look through the spices and add something like Italian seasoning and make it taste really good,” Carolyn shares.
Christopher’s summer journey with Kurbo has transformed his whole family. “My husband has cut down on desserts because he is learning from Kurbo,” Carolyn says. “He doesn’t use the app but he is counting stuff in his head more. Christopher’s sister is 4 years old and she’s always asking me, ‘is this a red?’ She really wants to do Kurbo. She’s been begging me to let her get the app, but she’s actually learning a lot about how to eat healthy just from Christopher. She eats more vegetables than any 4-year-old I know.”
Carolyn has even lost 19 lbs herself just from supporting Christopher through Kurbo. “At the beginning of the summer I said, ‘you’re not going to learn how to eat healthy alone I’m going to do it with you!’ I wanted to support him and now I’m actually changing. I’m realizing that a lot of foods I thought were healthy actually aren’t. I’ve been experimenting a lot in the kitchen to cook more healthy foods. A family favorite is the Kurbo pizza: low-fat mozzarella cheese and tomato sauce baked on a whole wheat English muffin.”
Christopher has a special green light recipe he wants to share with the Kurbo community: strawberry popsicles! “Puree strawberries in a blender or food processor. Mix the pureed strawberries with a little bit of water and put them in the popsicle containers with a popsicle stick in the middle. Place them in the freezer and wait overnight. They’ll be ready to eat for the next day!”
**This is a testimonial from an individual Kurbo user. Results will vary for different users.