CHESTERFIELD: Township hosts health fair

The township hosted its second annual Health and Wellness Fair this past Thursday.

by Amy Batista, Special Writer
CHESTERFIELD — The township hosted its second annual Health and Wellness Fair this past Thursday.
   ”It went really well today,” said Glenn McMahon, Health and Wellness Official. “This year we got it going again and each year we will improve.”
   The fair was hosted at the township municipal building on Nov. 7.
   ”Each year we try and do things,” said Mr. McMahon, who also serves as the JIF (Joint Insurance Fund) Coordinator. “We decided to do something about health and wellness nutrition and we decide to do a health and wellness fair.”
   According to Mr. McMahon, all the township employees participated in the fair including having their blood pressure taken. In addition, six staff member also received flu shots.
   New to the fair this year was a chiropractor doing back massages, learning how acupuncture works, flu shots, ideal nutrition, learning body mass indexes (BMIs) and local farmers who showcased fresh produce.
   ”These are local farmers who we asked if they would like to donate a basket,” Mr. McMahon said. “Since we are a farming community what better nutrition then to show what the farmers grown.”Next year, Mr. McMahon would like to relocate the fair next door to the Chesterfield Fire Department and schedule the event on a Wednesday in hopes of having attracting more participants and vendors.
   The first year of the fair did poorly due to it being scheduled right after Hurricane Sandy, he said.
   Fair vendors included Robert Wood Johnson, Ideal Nutrition, Civinski Chiropractor, Corner Stone Health and Wellness and the Burlington County Health Department.
   Robert Wood Johnson of Hamilton was doing blood pressure screenings, pulse rates and body fat.
   The RWJ Fitness & Wellness Center was also raffling off a gift basket valued at $275. It included one month free to the center and a half hour personal training session, 20 minute aquatic stroke analysis, medical fitness assessment and balance and posture screening.
   The hospital additionally mails out its quarterly Health Check magazine to around 100,000 families in the tri-county area. The publication features a wide variety of community services, classes, events, support groups, and more.
   ”Our community educators we develop them and facilitate them,” said Community Education Health Educator Marguerite O’Donnell. “We have many screenings. We go from pregnancy through to seniors. Every population.”
   RWJ features a “SHAPEDOWN” weight management program for children and teens battling obesity as well.
   ”We have a wonderful shape down program where we are dealing with childhood obesity issue,” Ms. O’Donnell said.
   It is a 10-week weight management program, which helps make lifestyle changes, focus on self-directed change, strengthen family dynamics and raise your awareness of weight-related triggers. The program has offerings for children ages 8 to 12 and their families as well as one designed for teens 13 to 17 and their families, according to the program website.
   Ideal Nutrition of Columbus was also on hand, focusing on the body mass index.
   ”We are helping people to improve their energy and weight management,” said Shelley Guevara of Jobstown.
   According to Ms. Guevara , they offer free personal wellness evaluations, a free boot camp and weight loss challenges.
   Jimmy Ling, of Wrightstown, participated in the first weight loss challenge that was done at his fire company and has dropped 80 pounds in a year and a half.
   ”That’s basically how we got involved with the JIF (Joint Insurance Fund), myself and the chief of Wrightstown,” said Mr. Ling. “I was trying to lead by example.”
   According to Mr. Ling, the number one killer for the firemen is vascular disease.
   ”I’m trying to immerse it into the first responders,” Mr. Ling said, adding that helps “to make sure everyone comes home at the end of the day.
   ”Basically what they are trying to do with this whole program is the JIF is trying to enforce the wellness initiatives and reduce insurance costs,” he added.
   Corner Stone Health and Wellness of Hamilton, a personal training studio for those who are looking to maximize workouts was also on hand.
   ”We have a different sort of take on personal training,” said Deborah Lynn Brooks, a certified personal trainer and training supervisor
   ”Everything we do is scientifically based,” Ms. Brooks said. “It’s based on anatomy. It’s based on how your muscles are suppose to function while you are functioning.”
   It is all “encompassing” and includes nutrition and personal workouts you can do at home, se said.
   Corner Stone also works with firefighters to be better fit when fighting fires and other assignments.
   ”We are trying to take their function and incorporating it into their workout because that will improve their function,” she said. “We had a lot of firefighters that said when they were going to drills they were blowing through their air tanks within minutes and now we have guys that can last four or five rounds one, maybe one and a half air tanks. We are trying to get it down to one.”
   Archer Law Office of Hamilton was present to advocate for the elderly and veterans who may need to consider Medicaid planning and asset protection, guardianships, estate planning, estate administration, veteran’s pension applications, special need trusts and more.
   ”Basically what we are doing is protecting the assets of the loved ones as they age and go through the aging process – doctors, nursing homes, living wills, power of attorney and all those issues,” said George Zink, client liaison. “Unfortunately, a lot of people wait too late to try and protect what they worked their whole lives for.”
   The Burlington County Health Department in Westampton also attended the fair and had a table full of brochures and fact sheets on the services it provides including the animal shelter, parks system and exhibits on display, chronic disease coalition, consumer health programs which include food safety information and food allergies, adult immunization program, special needs registry and much more.
   Flu shots can be scheduled online, according to its website.
   Free confidential HIV/AIDS counseling, testing and education services are available to county residents. Walk-in Clinics (no appointment necessary) are held at the Raphael Meadow Health Center Monday through Thursday from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. For more information call 609-265-5929.
   Ya-ling Chen of Treatment Point Acupuncture, LLC of Hamilton and Civinski Chiropractic and Wellness Center were on hand to explain about how acupuncture can be used to provide a natural relieve for headaches, neck and back pain, auto injuries, numbness, arthritis, nervousness, weight control and infertility.
   Acupuncture can also help people to quit smoking.
   ”I’m here to help people with a more natural healing,” said Ms. Chen. “There are no side effects and it makes people feel good and more energetic.”
   Mr. McMahon advises residents to keep an eye on the fair for next year and welcomes suggestions from the community.
   ”Look for us next year,” Mr. McMahon said. “It’s going to be bigger and better because we really want the community to be involved.”