Cancer, heart disease, Alzheimer’s, arthritis, diabetes… these and other chronic illnesses exact a heavy price to Canadians — $90 billion in treatment and lost productivity every year to be exact. But we can all take small steps towards better health — and beat those stats. That’s where HealthPartners’ #hpHealthySelfie Challenge comes in. We are challenging you to take small steps to healthier living: small steps that can make a huge difference to your health. Here’s just one simple example: we all talk about eating healthy, but do we really eat enough vegetables and fruits — you know, those foods that have loads of colours?
Our Experts are Taking the Challenge
See how Carolyn Waldo, gold medalist and former Team Canada swimmer, is taking the challenge.
Take the Challenge
At HealthPartners, our focus is on helping you make a positive difference in your health. Remember… when it comes to your health, colouring can make a huge difference!
Start Your Own Challenge
You can start your own challenge to eat more nutritious foods at home and at work. Here are just a few ways to get you started.
On your own:
get rid of the processed foods in your pantry and replace with fresh fruits and veggies
challenge yourself to make meals from scratch
round up the kids and make a pizza using all sorts of colourful vegetables
put all kinds of healthy food items in dishes, cover them and have the kids touch and taste to guess what they are, with a prize for the kid with the most correct guesses
organize a healthy lunch potluck for you and your colleagues to discover new tastes and new talents
trade healthy food recipes
Already have good habits?
challenge your friends, family and colleagues to follow your example, or challenge yourself further and tell us about it
And while you’re at it, take a selfieor video yourself, your family or you and your work colleagues in action. Tell us about the stepping stones you have taken to get healthy by eating foods with colour.
Share your own mini-challenges — and successes — with all of us at HealthPartners: Follow us on social media (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram) and post a selfie using #hpHealthySelfie to qualify for a chance to win a Fitbit!
The Link Between Eating Better and Reducing Your Risk of Getting A Chronic Disease
Carrots, broccoli, spinach, tomatoes, apples, oranges, blueberries, raisins, sweet potatoes — put them on a plate and you can’t help but notice the rainbow of colours.
Blue and purple fruits and vegetables like blackberries, blueberries, purple cabbage and plums are loaded with anti-oxidants. Going green is good for your brain as well as your bones, teeth and vision. Green options include avocados, broccoli, celery, cucumbers, peas and spinach. Choose white, tan and brown fruits and vegetables such as bananas, cauliflower, potatoes, turnips, onions and garlic. Add orange and yellow fruits and vegetables such as grapefruit, cantaloupe, butternut squash, peaches, papaya, oranges, sweet potatoes, yellow peppers and lemons to your plate. Reach for reds every day: choose beets, raspberries, radishes, tomatoes, red peppers, watermelon, rhubarb or cherries.
But vegetables and fruits aren’t just a pretty face. They pack a real punch when it comes to giving your body the nutrition it needs to give you energy, stay healthy — and happy.
Nutritious, healthy food:
keeps your weight in check
lowers the risk of heart disease
controls blood sugar fluctuations
protects brain health — so important to preventing Alzheimer’s disease
keeps your bones and teeth strong, and prevents bone loss associated with osteoporosis
The Alzheimer Society of Canada, Crohn’s and Colitis Canada, Canadian Diabetes Association and Heart & Stroke Foundation are all members of HealthPartners, a national organization representing 16 of Canada’s largest national health charities. At HealthPartners, we raise money for our member charities, enabling them to provide critical services, invest in research, and provide health education and wellness programs in communities across Canada.
But they have something else in common, too. All four agree that a healthy diet improves overall health and well-being, and can even prevent chronic disease. Nutritious food helps maintain brain function and slows memory decline. Increasing your fibre intake and reducing the amount of salt in your food will help control your diabetes. Food with preservatives, greasy foods, anything artificial, caffeine, sugar and spicy foods are to be avoided if you have Crohn’s or colitis. And, of course, those bad saturated fats won’t be an issue, says the Heart & Stroke Foundation, if you follow a healthy, balanced diet of whole or natural foods and few or no highly processed foods.
Four major chronic diseases… yet so simple to colour your way to better health. And HealthPartners’ #hpHealthySelfie Challenge will help you get started.
Eat healthy and take part in the HealthPartners’ #hpHealthySelfie challenge.