May 2012

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from our staff what I've learned this month... by Michelle Page-Alswager Ladies First How many times have your promises to there. And that's why our issue this month is all about health. Th e message isn't just to "get healthy." Our message is that YOU matter. As we get busy taking care of everyone else, we put ourselves last. Th at's where the 2012 Go Red For get in shape or eat better been set aside— jammed under a stack of mail or lost under a pile of dirty laundry? We've been there. Correction: We are Women Girlfriends challenge comes in. Th is year, we're proud to once again bring you the story of local women on a quest to turn around their health in the face of these ever-startling statistics: Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women, and 80 percent of women's heart events are preventable through lifestyle changes. Turn to p. 58 as they share the simple changes they've made to put themselves fi rst and better their heart health, and fi nd out how you can start your own journey today. Th en there's our cover woman, Meg Gaines. Th ere's so much to say about this powerhouse, but so little space. She's a person who knows fi rsthand what it's like to fi ght for your life with all your strength. Today, 17 years after doctors gave her a death sentence, she's standing as a voice for patients in need and promoting a mission to improve the health case system for all (p. 42). Th ere's so much more. Learn a few quick stress-busting stretches (p. 12), exercises that build bone health (p. 14), fun ways to get moving while you get in touch with your adventurous side (p. 16 and p. 65) and read the emotional journey of a women who, through the fog of her mother's de- mentia, learned that love will never be lost (p. 55). No matter where the road leads, remem- ber that the fi rst step to good health isn't getting off the couch or putting down that cupcake, it's making a conscious decision to put yourself and your health fi rst. " " Thanks to the Go Red For Women Girlfriends Challenge for reminding me that good health does not require perfect habits! As noted by one of the health experts, when you have a slipup (and scarf down some ice cream, as I just did), focus on the good changes you are making, don't give up, and treat every day as a new opportunity. "A Road Map to Better Health," p. 58 will experience a miscarriage in their lifetimes. My heart breaks for all of them, but I'm so glad to learn about a woman in the community who's there to help. "Work to Inspire," p. 38 Awesomed 3 "Laugh," p. 80 "Do you have children?" That simple question strung together the moving story of a local woman facing her mother's dementia. It was both heart-breaking Sarah DeRoo Editor in Chief 8 Michelle Reddington Publisher BRAVA Magazine May 2012 and inspiring. "The Question," p. 55 After reading Laura Gallagher's hilarious column this month I have a new word to add to my vocabulary! The number of local women being honored as "Champions in Women's Health" for their efforts to boost the health of women statewide. I always love seeing women recognized for all of their hard (and important) work! "Networking News," p. 37 Th e number of women who 1 in 4

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