Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Will Virginia Wellness Programs Prove Successful?

According to the CDC, as many as 58% of all Virginians are overweight or obese, 23% do not exercise on a regular basis, and an estimated 25% of Virginians smoke or use other tobacco products. In fact, obesity in Virginia has jumped 10% since 2000 – more than any other state in the nation.

Virginia’s Department of Health offers several motivating incentives to state employees to encourage healthier behaviors. Although Virginia falls somewhere in the middle of the national obesity spectrum, Virginians are still, clearly, overweight and unhealthy. In an attempt to remedy the situation, the Healthy Virginians initiative provides informational programs to residents of the state as well as free online tracking of health routines. Virginians are encouraged to participate in the America on the Move walking program and are urged to take part in Walk 15 – a daily 15 minute break offered to employees to promote 15 minutes of walking per day.

These programs are surprisingly simple yet effective when used correctly. Moderate exercise, or movement of any kind, is a major factor in combating hypertension, diabetes, and other chronic diseases. Virginia, like most states, has recognized the public health struggles that lie ahead. These recent prevention initiatives might be too little too late, but, if citizens respond positively to the programs and wellness options, they might represent the first step towards a healthier nation.

1 comment: said...

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