Monday, November 3, 2014

Kohl's CARDIAC Kids launches new year of heart-healthy education

Kohl’s Department Stores recently donated $53,541 to CoxHealth for its Kohl’s CARDIAC (Coronary Artery Risk Detection in Area Children) Kids program. The program tackles the issue of childhood obesity through health screenings and education for fourth graders in Nixa. A kick-off event was held on Monday, Nov. 3, at Nixa High Pointe Elementary School.

The event consisted of an assembly where kids learned about heart health, participated in a jump-roping activity, learned about how much sugar is in certain food products and much more.

“CoxHealth’s Kohl’s CARDIAC Kids has been working to fight childhood obesity in the Ozarks for three years by spreading the message of a healthy lifestyle through school-based and community events,” explains Lauren Holland, a CoxHealth wellness coordinator and CARDIAC Kids coordinator. “We’re working closely with children and their families to help them understand the connections between food, activity and overall health.”

Health screenings are a part of the program. “Our health screenings in the past have identified 39 percent of the children are overweight or at-risk, 58 percent have elevated blood pressure, and 17 percent have abnormal cholesterol results,” says Holland. “We’re working with these families to help them change their child’s health and future.”

In addition to the health screenings, CARDIAC Kids educators host fun, educational assemblies for students, and, through CARDIAC Kids Family Fun Nights, reconnect with at-risk families for information on exercise, kid-friendly healthy recipes and more.

The program is made possible by yearly grants from Kohl’s Cares. Since 2011, Kohl’s has donated more than $134,000 to CoxHealth to support the CARDIAC Kids program.