Our region is full of traits that don't quite show signs of a healthy life style.
Wellmont President and CEO Denny DeNarvaez says it's all about educating and leading by example.
That's precisely why they started Live Well, a free community health transformation initiative. "We need to promote exercise. We need to promote education. We need to make sure health risk assessments are followed up and that people feel comfortable to discuss whatever their issues are," said DeNarvaez.
She tells News 5 obesity is one of the most preventable behavioral issues that causes lots of problems down the road. "Weight management and exercise can help heart disease and strokes," said DeNarvaez.
DeNarvaez says it all starts in the workplace. "These employers have a lot of night employees, for example, who can't get access outside or anywhere else to healthy food choices. One of the things we'll talk about is how do we fill our vending machines with some healthy choices," said DeNarvaez.
Eastman Chemical Company, K-VA-T Food Stores, Alpha Natural Resources, Domtar Paper Company, Electro-Mechanical and Strongwell, all local companies with lots of employees, have been the first to jump on board.
Steve Smith, President and CEO of K-VA-T Food Stores, tells News 5 that health and wellness is the key to success. "When you have employees that feel good, they're better workers, they're better family members and they're going to be more successful. When they're successful, corporations and companies are successful," said Smith.
DeNarvaez says she hopes the community will see the importance of healthy living and will join in. "We hope this is contagious and it makes everyone take a look at the choices that are being made," said DeNarvaez.
Anyone who is interested can make the Live Well commitment by clicking here.