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February 21, 2008

Fair focuses on healthy lifestyle

Want to get healthy and reduce stress in your life? Get interactive.

The Healthy Lifestyle Experience fair invites Pitt employees to a series of interactive presentations, including a stress management workshop; musical therapy exercises; cooking demos; a nutrition trivia game; massages, and bio-feedback, blood pressure and body composition assessments.

Health coaches and other health care professionals will be on hand from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 27 in the William Pitt Union Ballroom to guide participants toward lifestyle adjustments that reduce stress.

Sponsored by Life Solutions (formerly the faculty and staff assistance program), the event will feature Bruce Rabin, professor of pathology, psychiatry and psychology at the Pitt School of Medicine and medical director of the UPMC healthy lifestyle program, who will speak noon-1 p.m. on “Stress Management and Building Healthy Lifestyles.”

David Morris, Life Solutions account manager, said, “This event offers some hands-on experiences that can help individuals adjust their lifestyles and learn different ways to reduce their stress. We also hope participants can have some fun, too.”

In addition to Rabin’s presentation, the event includes:

• A cooking demo by Diane Helsel, assistant professor in the Department of Sports Medicine and Nutrition. Helsel and her students will demonstrate how adjusting ingredients in a recipe can reduce fat and calories.

• A “nutrition wheel” trivia game. Participants spin a wheel that will land on a nutrition category and then attempt to answer questions that test their nutrition knowledge. The health specialists also will perform tests that measure the level of carbon monoxide in participants’ lungs, and will pass out fitness and nutrition materials.

• 10-minute massages by a licensed massage therapist.

• Demonstration of the Freeze-Framer, a software program that displays participants’ stress rate, heart rhythms and bio-rhythms, by Pitt Counseling Center personnel.

• Blood pressure screenings and body composition assessments by staff in Pitt’s wellness program.

• Organic vegetable wraps and oatmeal smoothie samples from the Red Oak Cafe, a locally owned and operated eatery.

• Medical music therapy by Andrea M. Scheve, UPMC medical music therapy family support manager. Scheve will provide information about music therapy as well as a brief relaxation experience.

For more information, contact Morris at 412/647-3296 or

—Peter Hart

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