246598 Healthy & Fit on the Go

Monday, October 31, 2011: 3:10 PM

Betsy Johnson, MPH , Extension Health & Nutrition, University of Minnesota, Grand Rapids, MN
University of Minnesota Extension employees travel extensively by car which creates a barrier to healthy eating and physical activity. Extension educators in health & nutrition developed a toolkit and education sessions with practical tips for healthy eating and physical activity for staff “on the go”. A review of research in behavior change, nutrition and physical activity resulted in a kit consisting of: a reusable lunch bag, cold pack, resistance band, BPA-free water bottle and 13 how-to tip cards covering topics in nutrition, physical activity and behavior change. In the year 1pilot, 145 kits were distributed to a paraprofessional nutrition staff group who received group instruction on the contents of the kit and an interactive lesson with the resistance bands. In year 2, additional tip cards were distributed with a balance ball educational session. Post- surveys were conducted to gauge use and usefulness of the kit and its components at one week and 3 months each year. In the initial survey, the majority of participants (87 percent) indicated the kit and educational sessions were good to excellent, more than 93 percent were motivated to make at least one change and planned to initiate at least one healthy lifestyle change. In subsequent surveys, participants reported using healthy eating tips (24 percent) and physical activity tips (8 percent); over 40 percent use the water bottle regularly. The kit with education is a useful tool for motivating staff to try tips for healthy lifestyle change. More frequent education and reminders are needed.

Learning Areas:
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify the efficacy of self-care toolkit components. 2. Describe the healthy lifestyle categories covered in the toolkit.

Keywords: Health Promotion, Worksite

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I am co-author of the intervention presented.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.