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United States, National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health American Indian Health: An information portal to issues affecting the health and well-being of American Indians
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HEALTH TOPICS - EXERCISING AND KEEPING FIT

Our Health

Dancing and Drumming: The Native American Quest for Healthy Weight (PDF, 49 KB)
(We Can! is a collaboration between the NHLBI, NIDDK, NICHD and NCI, NIH)

Energy Balance/Weight Control (PDF, 1.6 MB)
(Native American Cancer Research Corporation)
A fact sheet that helps to explain how and eating health and exercise can reduce the risk of cancer.

Health for Native Life Magazine
(Indian Health Services, HHS)
Free, online magazine, with articles about living a healthy life.

Healthy Weight for Life (PDF, 1.6 MB)
(Indian Health Service)
This easy-to-read manual provides guidance for taking action to stop the obesity epidemic. You can start by using lifestyle change strategies to achieve your own goals for a healthy weight and help your loved ones.

Physical Activity
(Indian Health Service, HHS)

We Have the Power (PDF, 518 KB)
(National Diabetes Education Program is a joint program of NIH and CDC, DHHS)

Our Stories

Delphine's and Marvella's Story
(Wisdom of the Elders)
A health coordinator discusses an exercise program sponsored by the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indians, and introduces us to two women that belong to an exercise program at the Yellowhawk Clinic.

Our Cultures are Our Source Of Health
(Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
Renowned Hollywood actor and Cherokee tribal member, Wes Studi, explains how American Indians and Alaska Natives are twice as likely to have diagnosed diabetes as non-Hispanic whites. Studi underscores the wisdom of cultural knowledge, including gathering and planting local traditional foods and playing traditional games, to promote health and prevent diseases like type 2 diabetes [9:02 minutes]

For Researchers, Health Professionals, & Educators

Development of a Culturally Appropriate, Home-Based Nutrition and Physical Activity Curriculum for Wisconsin American Indian Families
Peer reviewed article describing an obesity prevention intervention for American Indian families using a participatory approach involving three Wisconsin tribes. This program promotes healthy eating and physical activity for preschool children and their caregivers while respecting each community's cultural and structural framework.

Healthy Weight for Life: Actions for Health Care Teams and Leaders (PDF, 919 KB)
(Indian Health Service)
This 2001 publication provides evidence–based strategies for taking action now to improve your practice and your community. The guide also lists many online resources for healthy weight management programs and activities.

Honoring the Gift of Heart Health: A Heart Health Educator's Manual for American Indians (PDF, 4.2 MB)
(National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, NIH and Indian Health Service, HHS)
A comprehensive, culturally appropriate 10-lesson course on heart-health education for the American Indian community. Filled with skill-building activities, reproducible handouts, and idea starters. Two appendices cover activities for training Heart Health Educators to implement the program, and An American Indian Family's Journey to heart health, told with heart healthy recipes for each family member's favorite foods.

Let‘s Move in Indian Country: Toolkit and Resource Guide (PDF, 5.2 MB)
(The White House, Domestic Policy Council, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Department of the Interior, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the U.S. Department of Education, and in collaboration with the Office of the First Lady‘s Office and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the U.S. Department of Transportation, and the Corporation for National and Community Service)
This toolkit can be used by individuals, schools, pre–schools, before and after school programs, private organizations, tribal nations, community groups, committees, councils, fundraising coordinators, administrators and management, urban Indian centers, tribal leaders, local elected officials or anyone interested in helping American Indian/Alaska Native children combat obesity.

Obesity and American Indians/Alaska Natives
(Office of Minority Health, HHS)
Statistical data.

2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans (PDF, 8.5 MB)
(Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, HHS)
Science-based guidance to help Americans aged 6 and older improve their health through appropriate physical activity. Developed with health professionals and policymakers in mind, the Guidelines provide information to help learn about the health benefits of physical activity, understand how to do physical activity in a manner that meets the Guidelines, understand how to reduce the risks of activity-related injury, and assist others in participating regularly in physical activity.

Physical Activity Kit (PAK)
(Indian Health Services, HHS)
The PAK toolkit is designed to increase the time American Indians and Alaskan Natives spend in medium to high physical activity for all ages across the lifespan. PAK can be used in schools, communities, worksites, Head Start programs, elderly centers, and youth programs. Activities have been field tested to be culturally appropriate for Native communities.

Promoting a Healthy Weight in Children and Youth Clinical Strategies: Recommendations and Best Practices (PDF, 528.2 KB)
(Indian Health Service)
This 2008 report outlines clinical strategies on five childhood obesity prevention and treatment recommendations for health care professionals in Indian Health Service, tribal and urban Indian health clinical settings. The report‘s five recommendations are based on the best available clinical evidence regarding the prevention and treatment of overweight.

Well-Balanced
(Wise Elders Living Longer)
WELL–Balanced (Wise Elders Living Longer) is a health promotion program designed to be carried out by volunteer coaches. It provides community support for Native elders with diabetes, arthritis, and hypertension, as well as helping elders reduce their risk of falling.

Health Information About Exercise for Everyone

Active at Any Size (PDF, 354 KB)
(National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, NIH)

Be Active Your Way (PDF 1.1 MB)
(Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, HHS)
In the guide, you can read how you can fit physical activity into your life-your way. It can help you decide the number of days, types of activities, and times that fit your schedule.

Exercise and Physical Fitness
(MedlinePlus, National Library of Medicine, NIH)

Physical Activity
(MedlinePlus, National Library of Medicine, NIH)

Tips to Help You Get Active (PDF, 3,600 KB)
(National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, NIH)

What is Physical Activity?
(Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, USDA)

Organizations and Programs

Aim for a Healthy Weight
(National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, NIH)

Get Active
(office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, HHS)



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