Healthy Communities- May 3, 2013

Healthy Communities
Antronette YanceyAntronette Yancey dies at 55; advocate of short bursts of exercise
 Dr. Antronette K. Yancey, a UCLA professor, urged people to take an ‘instant recess’ to get fit. Yancey, who was described as a ‘rock star in the public health community,’ died of lung cancer.
Click on this link to visit Antronette’s website:


May 2013: Happy National Asthma Awareness Month!

Breathing Easier: Success Stories from CDC’s National Asthma Control Program 
New video resources to help individuals control their asthma
Information for children, including a “Kidtastics” podcast about asthma facts
Multimedia asthma messages for download and use by asthma control programs

New School Procurement Policy Brief and Fact Sheets
The Public Health Law Center of Minnesota, in partnership with the Minnesota Department of Health, has developed a policy brief and related facts sheets called Feeding America’s Children: Navigating the Complicated Terrain and Practical Challenges of Federal School Nutrition Programs.
The brief and fact sheets were developed to provide school food stakeholder audiences, such as public health and others, a better understanding of the school food environment. By understanding the school food system, those who support serving nutritious food in schools will be in a better position to identify opportunities for collaboration, build new partnerships, and obtain critical resources. While the brief uses the Minnesota system as an example, the national regulations apply to all states and will provide stakeholders in all states with valuable information. Click here to access these documents.

Training Needs Survey from the Center TRT
An important part of the Center TRT’s work is to enhance the public health impact of community obesity prevention efforts by providing training to public health practitioners like you. In order to best meet your training needs, the Center TRT is conducting a brief survey (15 minutes) that will help us to assess and prioritize areas for future trainings and Webinars. Click here to complete the survey by May 10, 2013.

Healthcare Professionals’ and EMS Stroke Patient Resources
F.A.S.T. Warning Signs Campaign Resources
Use these F.A.S.T. Warning Signs materials to help your patients and your community identify stroke warning signs and know how to react. New tools will be available in April/May 2013.

Reports and Articles

Coca-Cola: obesity is your fault, not ours
Food Politics by Marion Nestle, 4/25/13
Coca-Cola’s infographic gives no guidance about food choices or amounts best for health, but it is quite specific about physical activity.  Do lots!

U.S.-born Kids Have More Allergies, Asthma
Reuters, Genevra Pittman, 04/29/2013
Kids and teens who are born abroad and immigrate to the United States are about half as likely to have asthma and allergies as those who are born in the U.S., according to a new study.

Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program Helps Boost Consumption at Low-Income Elementary Schools
A new study conducted by USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service found that students at elementary schools participating in USDA’s Fresh Fruit and Vegetable Program consumed 15 percent more fruits and vegetables. Almost all students tried the fruit and vegetable snacks (97% and 84% of students, respectively); and a substantial majority ate most or all of snacks provided (86% and 61%, respectively). Click here to read the press release.

Government’s Role in Protecting Health and Safety
The New England Journal of Medicine: April 17, 2013
What is the appropriate role of governmental public health action? Law and public opinion recognize protection of health and safety as a core government function, but public health actions are sometimes characterized as inappropriately intrusive.

Clinical and Community Preventive Services Resources-Guide for Improving Cardiovascular Health at the Community Level, 2013 Update
The American Heart Association recently released its Guide for Improving Cardiovascular Health at the Community Level, 2013 Update. Two key features of this publication are that it includes evidence-based goals, strategies and recommendations for community-based public health interventions, and identifies dimensions around which community-wide approaches might be organized. This includes a) the optimal behaviors targeted for population-wide change; b) the community setting targeted for intervention; and c) the public health interventions required for population-wide changes to improve cardiovascular health.

Too Much Drinking, Weight May Harm Liver
HealthDay News: April 27, 2013
Being overweight and drinking too much alcohol can cause severe harm to the liver, two new studies warn.
One study found that overweight and obese women who were heavy drinkers had a significantly increased risk of developing and dying from chronic liver disease. The other study found an increased risk of liver cancer in people with alcoholic cirrhosis who also have fatty liver disease, type 2 diabetes and are overweight or obese.

Adult Participation in Aerobic and Muscle-Strengthening Physical Activities — United States, 2011
And it contains state level data… Oregon is second only to Colorado on the proportion of adults meeting aerobic activity guidelines. In fact, only OR and CO are above 60% (range 39.0 to 61.8%). The news is less rosy when it comes of meeting muscle-strengthening guidelines, although Oregon appears to be doing somewhat better than average at 30.9% (range 20.2 to 36.1%). Taking these two components into account, Oregon ranked 7th in the nation for adults meeting both aerobic and muscle-strengthening guidelines out of the 50 states and D.C. 

On Monday, April 15, Surgeon General Regina M. Benjamin announced the launch of It’s Only Natural, a new public education campaign that aims to raise awareness among African American women of the importance of and benefits associated with breastfeeding and provide helpful tips.

CONSUMPTION OF ADDED SUGARS AMONG U.S. ADULTS, 2005-2010 Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2005–2010
Increased consumption of added sugars, which are sweeteners added to processed and prepared foods, has been linked to a decrease in intake of essential micronutrients (1,2) and an increase in body weight (3). The Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010 recommends limiting total intake of discretionary calories, including both added sugars and solid fats, to 5%–15% per day (4). Recent analyses indicate that children and adolescents obtain approximately 16% of their total caloric intake from added sugars (5). This data brief presents results for consumption of added sugars among U.S. adults for 2005–2010. Results are presented by sex, age, race and ethnicity, income, type of food consumed (food or beverage), and location of consumption.
Key Findings:

  • The mean percentage of total calories from added sugars decreased with increasing age and increasing income.
  • Non-Hispanic black men and women consumed a larger percentage of their total calories from added sugars than non-Hispanic white and Mexican-American men and women.
  • More of the calories from added sugars came from foods rather than beverages.
  • More of the calories from added sugars were consumed at home rather than away from home.

To Improve School Climate, Examine Recess
Edutopia, Jill Vialet, 04/11/2013
Ms. Vialet, founder and CEO of Playworks, writes: “As we look at ways to create environments that allow teaching and learning to thrive, it’s time to take a long, hard look at the critical role of recess in our schools. Recess has the potential to transform schools, and groups are finally speaking out about the powerful role it has in the school day, including the American Academy of Pediatrics(3) which, earlier this year, released a policy statement to this effect.”

School ‘Discipline Gap’ Explodes As 1 In 4 Black Students Suspended, Report Finds
The Huffington Post, Joy Resmovits, 04/08/2013
For years, education advocates have highlighted the dire importance of closing the achievement gap of academic performance between students of different ethnic and socioeconomic groups. Now, another group of advocates is drawing attention to the discipline gap of unequal punishments to different groups of students. The Center for Civil Rights Remedies at the University of California, Los Angeles Civil Rights Project, released two reports on Monday that show the increasing gap between suspension rates of black and white students. One million — or one in nine — middle school and high school students were suspended in 2009-2010, including 24 percent of black students and 7.1 percent of white students.

School Lunches: The New Battlefront in the War Against Obesity
The Miami Herald, John Dorschner, 04/19/2013
Around him, many kids in the Sunset Park Elementary cafeteria in South Miami-Dade, Fla., were gingerly nibbling at fresh vegetables from the new salad bar, encouraged by hovering parent volunteers and teachers. Manuel Rodriguez, 6, had his eyes on something else.

A Healthy Debate on Healthy Choices in Schools
Washington Post, Ronald L. Beckwith (Opinion), 04/21/2013
As a parent whose child attended Fairfax County Schools, I was pleased to read that Fairfax and Montgomery County parents are demanding healthier snacks in school.

Public Health Touches Everybody: Washington State’s Mary Selecky on Accreditation
NewPublicHealth, 04/22/2013
NewPublicHealth is speaking with directors of several health departments who recently were accredited by the Public Health Accreditation Board. Eleven health departments received the credential so far. We recently spoke with Mary Selecky, director of the Washington State health department, one of the first two state health agencies to receive national accreditation status.

Governments May Push Workers Out of Employer Health Care and Into Health Exchange
Associated Press, Mike Baker, 04/24/2013
In a move that would capitalize on provisions under President Barack Obama’s health care law but could cost the federal government millions of dollars, Washington state lawmakers have found a creative way to pass a large chunk of their health care expenses along to Washington, D.C. – and analysts say others are likely to follow suit.

RWJF Scholar Compares Employee Weight-Loss Programs: What Works Best?
Employee weight-loss programs are gaining in popularity, as employers try to reduce health care costs by helping their workers get and stay healthy. But what kind of incentive program is most effective? Is it television’s Biggest Loser model of individuals competing for a single grand prize? Or does a group-based incentive program get the biggest bang for an employer’s weight-loss buck?New research from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Clinical Scholar alumnus Jeffrey Kullgren, MD, MS, MPH, explores the question, comparing a group-based incentive model with a program built around incentives just for individuals. Find out which employee weight-loss model works best.

Health Insurance CO-OPs Gear Up
Politico, Brett Norman, 04/25/2013
The public option is dead.

Playworks Emphasizes Safer, Healthier Schoolyard Play
The Lund Report, Christen McCurdy, 04/17/2013
In-school coaches, training help reduce the discipline problems associated with recess – which pediatricians say is critical to healthy development, but can also be the crucible of conflicts between kids.

Funding Pre-K programs is an investment that pays off in better lives, reduced crime, Janice Grieshaber Geddes, 04/23/2013
The Nurse Family Partnership is a program in which parents are taught, starting before the birth of their child, how to nurture and care for their children, and helps both the child and the parent(s). This is most often the mother who, through her partnership with a nurse, who comes regularly and “shows the way” through modeling and parent training, also achieves a reduced involvement with the legal system and an increased level of employment.

Where we live matters to our health
Osceola News-Gazette (FL), Belinda Johnson-Cornett, 04/19/2013
The health of a community depends on different factors including the environment, education, jobs, income, access to quality healthcare and our own individual behaviors. Health is a community issue and is not just about your visit to the doctor’s office. Health varies across communities; some communities are healthier than others. Social determinants of health are conditions in the environments in which people are born, live, learn, and work

Improving mental health starts with early childhood relationships
MedicalXpress, 04/24/2013
Making sure children grow up in a safe and stable environment is the goal of Iowa State University researchers working on a statewide evaluation through the Iowa Department of Public Health and the Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting programs. Researchers want to improve effectiveness as well as access for families to prevention and intervention programs.

Co-Creating Our Future, One Big Idea At A Time

Forbes, Karabi Acharya, 04/25/2013
It used to be that if you went to school and studied hard, you would get a job, buy a house and be a generally successful person.

The Truth About Workplace Wellness Programs: Everybody Wins
The Hill (Blog), Randel K. Johnson (Opinion), 04/25/2013
Workplace wellness programs have been critical elements of many employer sponsored healthcare coverage offerings for over a decade.

HHS Unveils Standards for Languages, Cultures
The Hill (Blog), Julian Hattem, 04/24/2013
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) on Wednesday released updated standards on providing cultural and language-appropriate healthcare services.

AHA Guide for Improving Cardiovascular Health at the Community Level, 2013 Update
Provides a comprehensive inventory of evidence-based goals, strategies, and recommendations for cardiovascular disease and stroke prevention that can be implemented on a community level. Includes strategies for addressing behaviors such as smoking, physical inactivity and unhealthy eating habits. Click here to access the guide and related materials.

Approaches to Increase Physical Activity
May is National Physical Fitness and Sports month. Studies show that regular physical activity reduces the risk for depression, diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, obesity, stroke, and certain kinds of cancer. The Community Guide In Action: Stories from the Field has two stories that promote physical activity, Evidence-Based Recommendations Get Minnesotans in the Groove and Rural Community Works Together to Stay “Fun and Fit”. NALBOH also has a free factsheet, Boards of Health Addressing Physical Activity Through The Community Guide. Use these resources to promote National Physical Fitness and Sports month in your community.

U.S.-born Kids Have More Allergies, Asthma
Reuters, Genevra Pittman, 04/29/2013
Kids and teens who are born abroad and immigrate to the United States are about half as likely to have asthma and allergies as those who are born in the U.S., according to a new study.

Cost of Feeding a Family of Four: $146 to $289
USA Today, Nanci Hellmich, 05/01/2013
The cost of feeding a family of four a healthy diet can run $146 to $289 a week, according to the latest numbers from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Everything You Need to Know About the Oregon Health Study
Washington Post (Blog), Ezra Klein, 05/01/2013
Wondering why everyone seems to be talking about some health-care study out of Oregon?

Changing Mothers’ Aid Limits Juice for Kids
Reuters, Andrew M. Seaman, 05/01/2013
A change to a U.S. program that provides food and medical visits to many infants, children and pregnant women succeeded in reducing the amount of juice bought overall, according to a new study.

Don’t forget about playgrounds
Greater Education, Laura Dallas McSorley, 04/22/2013
Playgrounds serve an important role in child development. They’re not just luxuries or “add-ons” in neighborhoods. Playgrounds and public parks are where children in cities gain crucial physical and social skills. To maximize learning during and after school, especially for our youngest learners, we should think about playgrounds as a public educational good, just as we do schools, libraries, and museums.

Hopkins conference tackles link between wealth and health
Baltimore Brew, John Bloch, 04/24/2013
“Does your zip code matter more than your genetic code?” This question raised by Dr. Anthony Iton, senior vice president of Healthy Communities, was at the heart of a symposium on the social determinants of health held at Johns Hopkins University yesterday. Although the conference focused on understanding and eliminating health inequity across the United States, the host city of Baltimore served as a potent case-in-point.


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