It’s That Time of Year Again: Embrace a Healthier You!

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As the new year unfolds, we find ourselves in a familiar cycle of resolution and reflection, particularly about our health. The aspirations we set with hope and determination gradually give way to the comfort of old habits. But what if this year could be different, especially when it comes to our health?

Obesity, a leading cause of preventable disease in Robeson County, is closely linked to the development of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and other chronic conditions. With the high obesity rate in Robeson County and the prevalence of chronic disease, it’s time we take proactive steps to foster a healthier lifestyle.

Physical activity is a critical component in living healthier. Regular exercise plays a crucial role in maintaining a healthy weight, reducing the risk of heart disease, and managing or preventing type 2 diabetes. The Centers for Disease  Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity each week, coupled with muscle-strengthening activities on two or more days.

February, celebrated as Heart Health Month, reminds us of the critical steps we can take towards better health. Heart disease remains the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States, yet it’s largely preventable through lifestyle changes. Despite these guidelines, achieving sufficient physical activity remains a challenge due to various barriers, including access to safe and convenient recreational spaces and the availability of community programs that cater to the needs.

In response, as the Family and Consumer Sciences Agent for North Carolina Cooperative Extension, Robeson County Center, I have implemented programs like Fit n Fun classes for individuals aged 55 and older. The free class offers a fantastic opportunity to enhance your physical fitness in a supportive and enjoyable environment. Classes will be held every Tuesday and Thursday from 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. February 20 through June 6, 2024. It’s your chance to commit to achievable fitness goals and take meaningful steps towards a healthier you.

Additionally, the battle against diabetes – a condition intimately linked with heart health – is also prevalent in Robeson County. Consider joining the Dining with Diabetes workshops that will be offered every Wednesday in March from     1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. There is a $20 registration fee and space is limited for this class. With approximately 1,028,026 adults in North Carolina diagnosed with diabetes and an additional 244,000 unaware of their condition, according to the American Diabetes Association, programs such as Dining with Diabetes cannot be overstated.

These classes not only promote physical activity and nutritional education, but also a sense of community and support. Joining one or both of these programs is a commitment to your health and wellness and demonstrates your obligation of improving your health challenges. The goal of both these programs is to empower participants with the knowledge and skills to make heart-healthy dietary and physical activity decisions.

Your health is invaluable and non-negotiable. By joining these classes, you’re not just signing up for a program; you’re stepping into a community dedicated to fostering healthier, happier lives. Remember, it’s the small changes that can lead to significant transformations.

Don’t let this year’s resolutions fade into the background. Take control of your health and start living the life you deserve. Join us and see how these little steps can lead to big changes in your well-being.

For more information, contact Wendy Maynor, Extension Family and Consumer Sciences Agent, at 910-671-3276, by Email at, or visit our website.