A Healthy Journey

Kenaniah and Laura Rush are young parents of an exuberant one year old boy named Xavier. Like so many people today, the Rush’s started to see that their eating habits and inactive lifestyles were adversely affecting them.  It came to a breaking point when both parents realized these trends were setting a poor example for their son.

Last Spring, Kenaniah and Laura signed up for the Passport to Health Program, sponsored by the Storehouse and Bon-Secours Health Systems:

“We wanted to learn how to eat healthier and not so much processed junk,” said Laura.

Passport to Health is a six month instructional course that focuses on the health of the entire family. The program emphasizes the importance of diet and exercise, as well as equipping families with the knowledge and skills necessary to make long term life changes. Each session includes cooking demonstrations, physical fitness techniques, samples of new foods and even a bag of fresh fruits and vegetables to take home.

“All of the different facts we learned really made the difference. We don’t even drink soda anymore, just a lot more water,” said Kenaniah.

‘What facts,’ you might ask? According to the American Heart Association, 1 in 3 kids and teens in the U.S. is overweight or obese (Overweight in Children; Aug 2014).

The program begins with a team of health professionals from Bon-Secours who conduct medical screenings such as weight, blood pressure and body mass index. The team continues to monitor each individual throughout the process.

“When we saw a change in our blood pressure, it made us want to do more,” said Laura.

Kenaniah and Laura currently have lost a combined total of 35 pounds and are motivated to continue their journey. “We have learned to eat new things, we even introduced turnips to our extended family and they love it,” said Laura.

Kenaniah summed it up best when he stated: “Our son is learning how to eat healthy, so when he gets older, he will not be part of the childhood obesity statistic.”

On February 17th March 7th, a new session of Passport to Health begins with over 50 families enrolled. Thanks to Bon-Secours and your partnership, over 100 people will have healthy journeys of their own in 2015.