Mossy Creek Health Expo set for March 12

Cammie Cain, a senior Foods, Nutrition and Dietetics major, prepares food in Carson-Newman’s FCS Foods & Nutrition Lab during last year’s Mossy Creek Health Expo.

Cammie Cain, a senior Foods, Nutrition and Dietetics major, prepares food in Carson-Newman’s FCS Foods & Nutrition Lab during last year’s Mossy Creek Health Expo.

The second Mossy Creek Health Expo is coming just in time to help those revive well-intentioned New Year’s goals of nutrition and exercise.

Located in Carson-Newman University’s Blye-Poteat Hall, The Mossy Creek Health Expo will address nutritional needs, physical activity, stress management, and economic and spiritual well-being.

Between 3 and 6 p.m. on Tuesday, March 12, campus and community are invited to browse health booths, watch cooking demonstrations and meet with student health professionals to assess one’s current health.

Carson-Newman senior Krista Hillenbrand is heading up the one-day health extravaganza with the help of the Student Academy for Nutrition and Dietetics and Carson-Newman’s Family and Consumer Science (FCS) Department, as well as numerous other campus groups and departments and community organizations.

“It is great to have this one event where multiple areas of campus can come together to promote health,” said Hillenbrand. “We each bring our areas of expertise and knowledge, and together can provide campus and community with a well-rounded health-focused event.”

Hillenbrand is a foods, nutrition and dietetics major and Bonner student. She combined her passion of health and service for her senior Bonner’s capstone project of organizing the health expo.

The idea for the expo began in Dr. Kimberly Johnson’s “Community nutrition and education” class. Johnson wanted her students to have hands-on experience with an educational activity, which would meet the needs of a specific population. Mossy Creek Health Expo grew from the ideas the students generated, and Hillenbrand took the lead.

“We look at this as a four-prong endeavor to engage the entire campus community, to take their disciple and to apply that to health,” said Johnson.

Those four prongs are the FCS Department for nutrition, exercise science for healthy living, counseling services for mental health, and C-N’s Religion Department for spiritual health.

“We think all of those are important to our health and wellbeing as individuals. You have to have everything in balance,” Johnson said.

The event will feature several healthy cooking demonstrations by FCS students as well as two talks by Dr. Michael Shipe, assistant professor of exercise science.

Each 30-minute presentation will provide a scientific look at obesity, its health risks and how to overcome them, followed by a question and answer session. He will discuss four main health issues associated with obesity — high blood pressure, high blood sugar, high cholesterol, and excess body fat — in “Syndrome X: Why visceral fat marks the spot.”

“Twenty-five percent of the adult population are already contending with these issues,” Shipe said.

In “The real culprit and solution to obesity,” Shipe will address how lifestyle and genetics play a role in obesity.

“If it is a product of lifestyle, then obesity is a learned behavior, which can be unlearned,” he said.

Several of his exercise science students will be available throughout the day to take blood pressure, assess resting metabolic rates, body composition and one’s risk for heart disease.

Nursing students will provide further health assessments, and the counseling services will be available for stress management tips. The Religion Department will provide information for spiritual health, including a flyer describing the ancient Christian art of reading and praying the scriptures (Lectio Divina).

Hillenbrand wants to show how health can to extend beyond oneself and into service to others. Community booths will provide visitors with opportunities and information to do just that. MEDIC, a regional blood center, will be on site with information for donating blood.

Other participating organizations include the American Medical Student Association (AMSA), the Jefferson County Health Department, UT Extension and others.

ARAMARK food services will provide free healthy snacks. Door prizes will also be given away. The event is free and open to the public.

For more information, please call Dr. Kimberly Johnson at (865) 471-2051.