Importance of good health stressed at Natick
Chair massage was among the free services offered March 23 at the Natick Soldier System Center's 2012 Health & Wellness Fair.

Ways for the workforce to stay healthy took center stage during the 2012 Health & Wellness Fair held March 23 at the Natick Soldier Systems Center.

Everything from acupuncture to weight loss was covered by 19 vendors at the second annual fair, held in NSSC's Lord Community Center. Participants had the opportunity to sample healthy foods, get a chair massage, and have their cholesterol, glucose levels and bone densities checked.

"We had approximately 550 (people) come through last year," said Emanuel Ingram Jr., chairman of the NSSC Community Health Promotion Council, which presented the fair. "We're expecting 700 or 800 today."

As Ingram pointed out, there was plenty of value at the fair for Soldiers, Family members, retirees and Department of Defense civilians.

"The average person who comes through here today -- between the screenings, the dietary, the physical fitness advice and the massages -- (gets) about $900 in free benefits … if they hit all the booths. It's all about … Army Family wellness."

Ingram said the fair was especially important for a workforce whose average age is above 35 years.

"We found out last year that the internal medicines were important," Ingram recalled. "Last year we had seven people referred … immediately after they went to bone density, blood pressure (or other screenings)."

In an age of budgetary woes, two vendors even offered financial advice.

"I think we've covered about every base," Ingram said. "I think we've got a good assortment today."

Ingram said the fair's success was owed to the council, which also included Amelia Dixon, Sarah Palmer, Andrea St. George, Lt. Col. Brian Wood, Command Sgt. Maj. Brian Warren, Sgt. Nemanja Pavlovic, Sgt. Larry Wesley, Darin St. George, Laura CapehartHall, Jaylynn Richard, Marina Carboni and Ken Rice.

"A lot of planning went into this," Ingram said. "If it weren't for them, we wouldn't be doing this. They enjoy what they do. I work with some good people."

Ingram expects the NSSC Health & Wellness Fair to continue growing.

"It's bigger this year than last year," said Ingram, "and I think it's going to be even larger next year."

Natick Command Sgt. Maj. Brian Warren was impressed with this year's event.

"I believe the health fair does an exceptional job showcasing behavioral, physical, spiritual, family and environmental health opportunities for our Soldiers, Families, and civilian workforce," Warren said. "The heath fair guided by our Community Health Promotion Council is important in keeping us all Army Strong."

Page last updated Thu March 29th, 2012 at 07:26