Diabetes awareness event to begin

NEW CUMBERLAND–The Hancock County Health Department is sponsoring its second annual “Stepping Towards a Healthier Lifestyle” walking contest in November.

The event, in cooperation with the Upper Ohio Valley Diabetes Coalition, is meant to stress the importance of walking and healthy eating for reducing the incidence of diabetes.

Participants may track their steps by using their own device or by picking up a free pedometer at the health department during regular business hours Monday through Friday.

The contest starts on Nov. 7 and continues through Nov. 30. During that time, participants may report their totals to the health department as frequently as they’d like. Steps can be reported via a phone call, a Facebook message or Twitter.

Every time step totals are reported, the participant’s name will be placed in the “walk box” to be eligible for a gift card. The drawing will be Dec. 1.

Suggested outdoor walking areas include the:

* Oak Glen High School track and fitness trail–every day during daylight hours.

* Weir High School track–Monday through Friday during daylight hours.

* Northern Panhandle Trail–every day during daylight hours.

Suggested indoor walking areas include the:

* New Cumberland City Building–6 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays.

* Chester City Building–9 a.m. to 3 p.m. weekdays.

* Millsop Community Center, Weirton–11 a.m. to noon Mondays (free if the person mentions the Diabetes Coalition upon entering the building).

“Although we have improved slightly, West Virginia still ranks as one of the highest states for the prevalence of diabetes,” said health department Administrator Jackie Huff. “By eating healthier, staying active and taking control of their lives, Hancock County residents will begin to feel better and manage their diabetes more effectively. Often, little changes can lead to big results.”

For more information, call the health department at 304-564-3343.