Tag Archives: fitness

From Other Blogs: The dangers of carbon monoxide, staying fit, tracking Radon

 A collection of health and environmental posts from other governmental blogs.

The Dangers of Carbon Monoxide

According to the American Red Cross, more than 15,200 people go to hospital emergency rooms each year to be treated for carbon monoxide poisoning.

And, approximately 400 people die each year from carbon monoxide poisoning. — From Lexington Medical Center’s official blog

Fitting in fitness throughout your busy day

Finding time for exercise can be a challenge. Ideally, we should be getting 30 minutes of moderate exercise five times a week. But how can you squeeze that into your already busy day? — From Flourish, Palmetto Health’s blog

Radon: We Track That!

CDC’s Tracking Network connects people with vital information on a variety of health and environmental topics. Learn how radon data and information help determine individual and community risk for radon and inform community interventions. — The Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s Your Health – Your Environment blog

DHEC in the News: SC FitnessGram, disease outbreaks in pools, Lyme disease

Here’s a look at health and environmental news from around South Carolina.

New research shows nearly half of South Carolina kids don’t meet fitness standards

More than one-third of South Carolina children are overweight or obese and nearly half fail to meet fitness standards related to brisk walking and running, new statewide data shows.

The SC FitnessGram project marks the first time this type of data has been collected across the state, a press release published by the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control explained.

General Interest
1 in 3 swimming-related disease outbreaks occur at hotels

A third of treated recreational waterborne disease outbreaks during 2000 through 2014 occurred in hotel pools or hot tubs, according to a report published today in CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly ReportCryptosporidium (also known as “Crypto”), Pseudomonas, and Legionella caused most of the outbreaks in swimming venues in the United States during this time period.

Risk for Lyme disease at an all-time high

Ticks are small arachnids, ranging in size from a grain of sand or a poppy seed to an apple seed. Small they may be, but they can carry a big problem.  Ticks carry an array of diseases including Lyme disease.

Isaiah Lundmark, 10 years old, of Clifton, was diagnosed with Lyme disease in September 2017. Isaiah’s mom, Carissa Lundmark, 37, is trying to create awareness about Lyme disease and how this year could be the worst year for ticks.

Helping S.C. Communities Increase Access to Physical Activity Opportunities

By Kelly Kavanaugh, MPH, CHES – Active Living Consultant, DHEC Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity 

Being physically active is one of the most important steps that people of all ages and abilities can take to improve their health. In South Carolina, the Active Community Environments (ACE) Special Project is taking action to improve access and opportunities for physical activity throughout the state.

The counties of Barnwell, Colleton, Greenwood, Lexington, Newberry, and Richland were recently recognized by Eat Smart Move More South Carolina and the SC Department of Health and Environmental Control for increasing access to safe physical activity through the ACE Special Project.

ACE Recognition Event

Recognition event celebrating the six counties.

Bikeway in greenwood

A cyclist uses designated crossings in Greenwood.

Some of the project strategies included: installing road signs; creating bike lanes and bike boulevards; improving school safety with fencing and crossing guard equipment; and creating master bicycle and pedestrian plans for future community improvements. The six projects took place from May 2014 – June 2015 and lessons learned will be used to assist other communities that want to create physical activity options for their residents.

“We are so impressed with what these six ACE communities have accomplished and are excited to see their continued progress,” said Lori Phillips, MPH, MCHES, director of DHEC’s Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity, and Obesity. “We are working to implement similar efforts in up to 15 counties across the state.”

The focus of the ACE Special Project was for communities to consider the impact of community design on active living. The program aligns with Step It Up! The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Promote Walking and Walkable Communities. One of the Call to Action’s five strategic goals is to design communities that make it safe and easy for people of all ages and abilities to walk.

The Riverwalk in Cayce improves access to walkable parks and paths,

The Riverwalk in Cayce improves access to walkable parks and paths,

“The Surgeon General’s Call to Action is a landmark event in the ongoing effort to establish promotion of physical activity as a major focus of public health in the United States,” said University of South Carolina professor Dr. Russ Pate, who is also Chair of the National Physical Activity Plan Alliance. “This Call to Action draws attention to the important health benefits of physical activity, in general, and walking in particular.”

Increasing people’s physical activity level can significantly reduce their risk of chronic disease and premature death while supporting positive mental health and healthy aging.

For more information on the ACE Special Project, please contact Kelly Kavanaugh at kavanak@dhec.sc.gov.

September is Healthy Aging Month

By Michele James, Division of Healthy Aging Director

September is Healthy Aging Month, an annual national observance focused on the positive aspects of growing older and taking personal responsibility for one’s health – physically, socially, mentally and financially.  There is no getting around the fact that as we age our bodies and mind change, however, there’s a lot you can do to improve your health and longevity and reduce your risk for physical and mental disability as you get older.

Americans are living longer and better than ever before thanks to major medical and public health advances and greater access to health care. Life expectancy at birth in the United States has reached a record high of 78.8 years and many Americans are living up to their 80’s and beyond.

In South Carolina, from 2000 to 2010 the older adult population grew by 32.1%, putting the state in the top ten fastest growing older adult populations.  By 2029, it is expected that our state’s population of older adults will exceed 1.1 million, resulting in one of five South Carolinians being over the age of 65.

No matter what your age, making changes and improvements can have a positive effect on how well you age.

Healthy behaviors such as exercising regularly, good nutrition, and getting recommended health screenings can contribute to longer, healthier lives, even if someone has a chronic condition or a disability.  The SC Department of Health and Environmental Control, Division of Healthy Aging in collaboration with the Lt. Governor’s Office on Aging   promote two exercise programs and one chronic disease self-management program:

For more information on these programs, click here.