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Cigarette smoking remains the largest cause of preventable disease, disability and death in the United States. By adopting a Smoke-Free Policy, you ensure that your staff, congregation and visitors to your organization are protected from secondhand smoke exposure. Faith-Based Organization WellSpots are required to implement a Smoke-Free Policy for Level 2 designation and a Tobacco-Free Policy for Level 3 designation. For sample policies, visit the provided resources.
The Louisiana Breastfeeding Coalition's Breastfeeding Welcome Here Campaign allows organizations to promote breastfeeding without taking the steps to become Breastfeeding Friendly designated. This program asks organizations to sign a pledge and display a window cling to show support of a mother's right to breastfeed anytime, anywhere (supported by Louisiana law). Signed pledge forms can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Faith-Based Organizations who submit a signed pledge form will receive a window cling to display and be listed on the Louisiana Breastfeeding Coalition website.
A Congregational Wellness Program is a congregation centered approach to improve health outcomes and health behaviors, and reduce the risk of chronic disease. Wellness programs include coordinated strategies to promote and support overall health, such as healthy eating, physical activity, mental health (including stress management) and tobacco cessation. Creating a Congregational Wellness Program starts by assessing your congregation to discover their health needs and interests. The next step is to offer activities based on the assessment results. A congregational program can be implemented at little to no cost and will create an environment that supports health!
In the last 20 years, the number of adults diagnosed with diabetes has more than tripled as the U.S. population has aged and become more overweight. Currently, 1 in 3 U.S. adults have prediabetes, where blood-sugar is higher than normal but not high enough yet to be diagnosed as diabetes. People with prediabetes are at high risk for Type 2 Diabetes, heart disease and stroke.
The Center of Disease Control and Prevention's lifestyle change program, National Diabetes Prevention Program, helps people with prediabetes prevent or delay Type 2 Diabetes and other serious health problems and improve overall health. The good news? It's scientifically proven, and it works! Help those suffering with prediabetes find support by providing a space for the YMCA or other organizations to host a NDPP. Click here to find local NDPPs.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 39.8% of Americans are obese (BMI is 30.0 or higher) resulting from a combination of causes and contributing factors, including behavior and genetics. Behaviors include dietary patterns, physical activity/inactivity, medication use and other exposures. Obesity is a serious concern associated with poorer mental health outcomes and reduced quality of life.
People and families may make decisions based on their environment or community, and it is important to create environments that make healthier choices easier. Community, child care, school, healthcare, workplace and faith-based settings can all influence people's daily behaviors. Adoption of at least one of these practices helps to create an environment that encourages healthy eating. The resources provided below will help you create a faith-based environment that supports healthier choices.
Regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your health. The benefits of physical activity include controlling weight, reducing the risk of multiple chronic diseases, strengthening bones and muscles, improving mental health and mood, preventing falls and increasing chances of living longer. Adults need at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity (such as brisk walking) every week and 2 or more days of muscle-strengthening activities. Children and adolescents should participate in 1 or more hours of physical activity each day.
Creating or modifying environments to make it easier for people to walk or bike is a strategy that not only helps increase physical activity, but can make our communities better places to live. Adoption of at least one of these practices helps adults and youth meet the requirements for daily physical activity.
Chronic diseases and conditions such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, Type 2 Diabetes, obesity and arthritis are among the most common and preventable of all health problems. Half of all American adults have at least one chronic condition, and almost one-third have multiple chronic conditions; many of which share the same cause. Faith-Based Organizations have an opportunity to provide education about chronic disease prevention and management to help their congregation members live healthier lives.
Health education-based practices aim at promoting healthy behaviors and preventing chronic disease.