First Annual Concho Valley Wellness Symposium
SAN ANGELO, TX — The first annual Concho Valley Wellness Symposium was held Tuesday morning at the McNease Convention Center. The symposium was a platform to teach community and business leaders about encouraging a healthy lifestyle for their workers and employees. Shannon Medical Center and the American Heart Association worked together to bring the information to the public.
“A healthy lifestyle in the workplace is important because of many reasons,” said keynote speaker Dr. Eduardo Sanchez. “Healthy people means less sick days, more productivity, and positivity.” Dr. Sanchez is the Chief Medical Officer for Prevention and Chief of the Center for Health Metrics and Evaluation for the American Heart Association.
A main part of the presentation was ‘Stress Less’ because “constant stress can have real physical effects on the body and can affect mood, sleep, appetite, and even heart health.”
Shannon Medical Center suggests you “follow these 5 tips to reduce stress and manage unhealthy habits:
- Stay positive: Laughter has been found to lower levels of stress hormones, reduce inflammation in the arteries, and increase “good” HDL cholesterol.
- Unplug. It’s impossible to escape stress when it follows you everywhere. Take time each day—even if it’s for just 10 or 15 minutes—to escape from the world.
- Meditate. This practice of inward-focused thought and deep breathing has been shown to reduce heart disease risk factors such as high blood pressure. Yoga and prayer can also relax the mind and body.
- Exercise. Every time you are physically active, whether you take a walk or play tennis, your body releases mood-boosting chemicals called endorphins. Exercising not only melts away stress, it also protects against heart disease by lowering your blood pressure, strengthening your heart muscle, and helping you maintain a healthy weight.
- Find ways to take the edge off your stress. Simple things, like a message, a warm bath, drinking green tea, listening to music, or spending time on your favorite hobby, can give you a much-needed break from the stressors of your life.”
The symposium featured exhibit booths and networking with different professionals to help bring a more health-conscious mindset to the workplace. Breakout sessions were included; Managing Stress and Emotional Health was discussed with the West Texas Counseling and Guidance, How to Start a Wellness Program in you Workplace was presented by Shannon Health and Wellness professionals, and Financial Health Management was presented by Cecil A. Ross Investments & Insurance Group.
Dr. Eileen Barbella, a doctor in psychology at Shannon, discussed the importance of emotional wellbeing and balance to workforce productivity.
To end the symposium, a panel of professionals were brought up to discuss what works well for wellness. The panelists included Erica Tribolet, SDO Supervisor for Blue Cross Blue Shield, Stephanie Barnes, Program Coordinator for Ethicon, Nicole Vick, Program Manager of Health & Fitness for Ethicon, David Hartin, Safety Coordinator for Reece Albert, and Scott Turner, Chief Customer and Marketing Officer for Time Clock Plus.
Sponsors for the symposium included Shannon Medical Center, Reece Albert, Inc. Ethicon, C&D Roofing and Construction, and H.E.B.
For more information on how to encourage a healthier workplace, contact Devin Foster, Shannon Health & Wellness Outreach Coordinator at 325.657.5743 or [email protected].