May 12, 2014

KDHE Office of Communications, 785-296-0461

KDHE to hold community Health and Wellness Fair May 21

TOPEKA, Kan. - On Wednesday, May 21 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) will host a community-wide health and wellness fair. The fair will be held on the south lawn of the Kansas State Capitol and is open to the public, the downtown Topeka community and State of Kansas employees.

The fair will feature more than 40 area health and wellness groups and will offer educational resources and interactive screenings and demonstrations. Attendees will have the opportunity to receive free screenings or assessments for strength, blood pressure, percentage of body fat, body mass index, vision, hearing, blood sugar, balance, posture, flexibility, and grip strength. The fair will highlight workplace wellness practices including health education, chronic disease management techniques, increased physical activity and access to healthy foods during the workday.

“KDHE encourages employers to move towards comprehensive worksite wellness programs,” said KDHE Secretary Dr. Robert Moser. “Simple changes like promoting walking during lunch breaks, improving food options in cafeterias and vending machines, and encouraging employees to attend the free Capitol Midweek Farmers’ Market, can benefit both employers and employees.”

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, chronic diseases such as heart disease, cancer, obesity and diabetes are the leading causes of death and disability in the United States. Chronic diseases account for 70 percent of all deaths in the U.S. and more than 75 percent of health care costs are due to chronic conditions. According to the 2009 Kansas Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (KS BRFSS) the prevalence of adult obesity in Kansas has more than doubled in the last 20 years, rising from 13 percent in 1992 to 31 percent in 2012.

Because many adult Kansans spend one third of each day in the workplace, KDHE supports Kansas employers in their efforts to create work environments that make the healthy choice the easy choice for their employees during the workday.

The Capitol Midweek Farmers’ Market is held every Wednesday from May 14 to October 22 in front of the Capitol on the north side of 10th Avenue.

In the event of cancellation due to inclement weather, the health and wellness fair will be rescheduled at the same time and location for Wednesday, May 28.