Healthy Heart U
Healthy Heart U and H.E.A.R.T
Helping Educators Attack Cardiovascular Risk Factors Together (H.E.A.R.T.) is an elementary school-based heart disease and obesity prevention program with the goal of preventing the development of high blood pressure, high cholesterol and obesity in West Virginia children and their families through nutritional education and physical activity.
According to the 2002 National Vital Statistics Report by the Centers for Disease Control, West Virginia ranks first in the nation for deaths from cardiovascular related diseases. Realizing many of the risk factors for heart disease begin in childhood, St. Mary's established the H.E.A.R.T. Program in 2001.
Since the inception of the H.E.A.R.T. Program, more than 4,000 third- through fifth- grade students in Cabell County, W.Va. elementary schools have been screened for cholesterol, blood pressure, and body mass index. Additionally, hundreds more have been given heart disease prevention education in the classroom and have participated in a walking program to increase their fitness levels. From 2001 to 2003, students walked more than 20,000 miles in the "Feelin' Good Mileage Club," a walking program that rewards children for every five miles they walk. The program is adaptable to help kids build math, geography, and science skills while they exercise.
With your help, The H.E.A.R.T. Program will broaden the focus of combating childhood obesity and to extend educational efforts into Wayne and Lincoln Counties of West Virginia.