Iowa’s largest health insurance company is combining forces with three large nonprofit health groups in launching a campaign to get Iowans on their feet and walking. Andrea Smith, spokeswoman for Wellmark Blue Cross and Blue Shield, says they’re giving out thousands of pedometers at various walking events statewide this summer, including at the Iowa State Fair.The first 200 people who do the “Walk Around the Fair” promotion will get free pedometers while there are some 140 events planned over the next few months through Iowa chapters of the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association and the American Diabetes Association. Smith says walking can help Iowans prevent cancer, heart disease, stroke and diabetes. Smith says the pedometers, which keep track of every step you take, are being used as a catalyst and a hands-on motivator to get people interested in walking and making positive changes in their lives. She says the “Walking Works” campaign is designed to make Iowans “get up, get out and get moving.”She says people can improve their health by walking, running, jogging, swimming, pacing while on the phone, taking the stairs instead of an elevator or even by parking farther away from your destination. More information is available at “www.everydaychoices.com”. Smith says between cancer, diabetes, heart disease and stroke, more than 17-thousand-500 Iowans die every year.
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