Community Healthcare Shares Wisdom with Cardiovascular Research Symposium

Community Healthcare Shares Wisdom with Cardiovascular Research Symposium
By: Emma Pollitt Last Updated: March 17, 2016

How many times did you move today? Is exercise really the answer to losing weight? What is diabetes? These are all questions Debi Pillarella M.Ed., and Mary Margaret Dagen, M.D., ABOM answered on Wednesday night at The Center for Visual and Performing Arts in Munster.

Doctor Mary Margaret works at the Spectrum Health Medical Group, and drove all the way from Michigan to speak, and Debi Pillarella is the program manager at Community Hospital Fitness Pointe Exercise.

Debi Pillarella was the first to present and mainly hit on how just little movements throughout your day DO help you on your way to “health paradise”. In this hands-on interactive presentation many members from the Munster community who currently have diabetes or heart disease, stood up and stretched and practiced NEAT (nonexercise activity thermodynamic), or little movements like waving your hand or slicing vegetables. Pillarella says that just by doing these small things every hour or so during your day, can lower your chance of heart disease and diabetes.

She also addressed those who do have diabetes or heart disease in the crowd, she informed them that Fitness Pointe offers each member who joins, a fitness profile, personalized programs, and facilities for members at risk for chronic disease or who would benefit from rehabilitative care.

“Fitness is so simple, just move,” said Pillarella.

The next presentation was more informational, Doctor Mary Margaret dove into the specifics of diabetes and answered many questions from diabetic patients in the crowd.

“Every two hours you watch tv is a 23% increase in obesity and 14% in type two diabetes,” said Doctor Margaret. This was a surprise for many diabetics in the crowd.

She gave many other useful tips like: “If you only exercise and do nothing else for 15 years, you don't lose weight.”

She also hit on the importance of eating a healthy diet and moving throughout the day. St. Mary’s is soon starting a partnership with the Valpo YMCA, featuring an on-site nurse at the Valparaiso YMCA located to do health screenings. This is a very exciting opportunity for St. Mary’s and the Valpo YMCA, because they can put these tips to use and help their members more thoroughly.

Overall, many diabetics and heart disease patients came away satisfied with the information given in the presentations. Doctor Margaret was the one to close out the presentation leaving the audience with a final, resonating quote.

“Eat to live don't live to eat."