The holiday shopping season is in full gear, and while shoppers are looking for that perfect gift for a loved one, the DuPage County Health Department wants to remind residents it is the perfect time to get themselves the gift of health insurance. Residents now have until Dec. 23 (previously Dec. 15) to sign up for coverage that will ensure their plan starts on Jan. 1, 2014.
To help residents enroll in the Health Insurance Marketplace, Enroll DuPage will be extending appointment hours at its main office (111 N. County Farm Road, Wheaton) Monday-Thursday between 4pm-8pm and on Saturday between 8am-1pm.
There are two ways residents can enroll for health coverage this holiday season. First, if they’re comfortable navigating the marketplace on their own (and online) they can visit www.getcoveredillinois.gov. If a resident wants some help in enrolling, they can call 888-724-0077 to schedule an appointment with an Enroll DuPage navigator. At their appointment, they’ll receive in-person assistance in enrolling in the marketplace.
The League of Illinois Bicyclists is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to improving bicycling conditions in Illinois. They are the statewide advocate for all Illinois bicyclists, promoting bicycle access, education, and safety. Their vision is : “Illinois – Land of Safe and Enjoyable Bicycling for all.”
In addition to great information about biking, their website provides helpful quizzes for Adult Bicyclists, Motorists, and Child Bicyclists at www.bikesafetyquiz.com
The League of Illinois Bicyclists has also developed bike safety sheets focusing on safe riding skills. The single-page format can easily be reprinted in newsletters, copied for bike rodeos, etc. There are two versions: one for younger elementary school kids (Grades K-3), one for older elementary and pre-teens (Grades 3-7). The back of each has further details for parents.
The sheets may be downloaded and printed for your use. Limited quantities of printed copies are also available from LIB (630-978-0583). To print a copy go to: http://www.bikelib.org/safety-education/kids/bike-safety-sheet/League of Illinois Bicycls
Christina Fitzgerald, a registered dietitian and licensed dietitian nutritionist, is the owner of Nourished, Nutrition and Wellness, nourishedliving.com and stated in the December 4, 2013 edition of the Daily Herald Newspaper that breakfast is the key for all of us to survive the day in a mentally and physically healthy way. No matter what the schedule is going to be, I insist that we all sit down for a family breakfast. That doesn’t mean that we always sit down at the exact same time, but it’s known that we’re not jumping into obligations/chores/playdates without having a substantial and healthy breakfast. When we’re really in a pinch, my on-the-go breakfasts include:
• Whole wheat waffle and peanut butter banana sandwich. Wrap this in a paper towel, hand them a milk box, and you’ve got a nourishing breakfast.
• Protein smoothies. Add cottage cheese or peanut butter to almost any fruit smoothie and not only will it blend the flavors nicely, but it will add a punch of protein that will keep the engines running
• Overnight oatmeal. If it’s a holiday morning and I need to clean or cook first thing and don’t want to deal with cooking breakfast, I serve up overnight oats. The base is equal parts oats to milk and yogurt; my kids like the blend of milk and yogurt for the added creaminess. The base is great because you can then mix and match flavor toppings to each family member’s taste.
The DuPage County Health Department would like to remind residents about the importance of getting an annual flu shot. Flu season can last as late as May and getting a flu shot is the best way to avoid the flu.
Influenza is a contagious respiratory infection that can lead to serious complications like hospitalizations or even death for some people. Even healthy children and adults can get very sick from the flu. Continue reading
It’s been a little bit since Healthy Lombard Partner and Certified Health and Wellness Coach Melanie Jordan started working with the winner and runner-up of The Greater Lombard Area Weight Loss Transformation Contest, so let’s see how they’ve been doing! For background on Cindy and Cheryl CLICK HERE
Our Winner, Cindy Musiel is what Coach Melanie calls “an absolute rockstar!” As of 11/25–her last weigh-in, she’s lost seven more pounds. Cindy also smartly planned for the Winter weather by joining a gym and taking her workouts indoors, added water aerobics, and is now strength training and doing Zumba®–new experiences for her.
Another new achievement for Cindy was walking her first-ever 5K (The Dan Gibbons Turkey Trot in Elmhurst) to kick off her Thanksgiving celebration. Now she’s eager to do another one!
For runner-up, Cheryl Behrens, she’s decided to focus more on stress reduction and feeling more energized with Coach Melanie. So together, they’ve been working on time management, getting more organized and being more in control of situations where it’s possible. Cheryl has been making great strides in these areas, and is already reporting improved energy, feeling better and being more active.
Way to go Cindy and Cheryl!
Below is a story than just needed to be shared. What does it have to do with health? Well, it speaks to an often neglected aspect, Socal and Emotional Health. Happy Thanks-giving!
Thank you to all of the wonderful parent volunteers – Mary Lou Ochalek, Sherree Witt and Jennette Faragoi – and the ACTS (Advocating Character Through Service) Committee for providing food and drink for all.
Looking for a “Healthy and Easy” soup to serve on Thanksgiving?
Try this one that is featured on the Healthy Lombard YouTube website!
November is a great time of the year, with the leaves changing and our attention turning to the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. This month is also National PTAs Healthy Lifestyles Month – a time when PTAs are encouraged to celebrate health and wellness in their schools and communities.
The Great American Smoke-out is being observed on Thursday, November 21 this year and the DuPage County Health Department is encouraging smokers to use that date to kick off their attempts to quit smoking.
Tobacco use remains the largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the United States, yet more than 43 million Americans still choose to smoke. By quitting, even for one day, smokers will be taking an important step towards a healthier life and reduce their risk of disease. The health benefits of quitting smoking happen immediately:
- 20 minutes after quitting: Your heart rate and blood pressure drop.
- 12 hours after quitting: The carbon monoxide level in your blood drops to normal.
- 2 weeks to 3 months after quitting: Your circulation improves and your lung function increases.
- 1 to 9 months after quitting: Coughing and shortness of breath decrease; cilia (tiny hair-like structures that move mucus out of the lungs) start to regain normal function in the lungs, increasing the ability to handle mucus, clean the lungs, and reduce the risk of infection.
- 1 year after quitting: The excess risk of coronary heart disease is half that of a continuing smoker.
- 5 years after quitting: Risk of cancer of the mouth, throat, esophagus and bladder are cut in half. Cervical cancer risk falls to that of a non-smoker. Stroke risk can fall to that of a non-smoker after 2-5 years.
- 10 years after quitting: The risk of dying from lung cancer is about half that of a person who is still smoking. The risk of cancer of the larynx and pancreas decreases.
- 15 years after quitting: The risk of coronary heart disease is that of a non-smoker. Continue reading