If there’s one thing Arc client Dana Hale learned from his experience in The Arc’s HealthMeet program it’s the definition of nutritious food. “No Baloney!” says Dana, “and I stay away from hot dogs, bacon and eggs, fried food, salt and pepper and no alcohol or smokes.” He has also given up sugary soda drinks.
Dana, who has been blind since birth and faces other developmental disabilities, is determined to eat healthier food – both during lunch and snack breaks at The Arc’s Walpert Campus in Hayward and at his board and care home where he has lived since 1994.
Dana’s first HealthMeet weigh-in was 239 pounds – his current number is 228 and it’s still heading in a downward direction. “I used to just play basketball and walk,” Dana says, “Now I do the stationary bike, chair exercises like chair sit-ups, dancing, and swimming as part of the Boot Camp exercises.”
Like many of us, Dana tried other weight loss programs over the years but he was always uptight about the weekly weigh-ins. With HealthMeet there is far less pressure and he has adopted the motto, “Be Healthy but Be Happy Doing It.” One of his “happy exercises” is lying on a yoga mat and “swimming in the ocean” to the sounds of the Beach Boys. His other passion is basketball. Dana has a friend tap his white cane on the rim. From the sound, he can judge the location and distance and has a great shooting percentage from the floor. See Dana on the court in our video by clicking here.
Dana’s inspiration is Katie – his girlfriend of 15 years. They are inseparable and Katie was also part of HealthMeet. Dana also credits HealthMeet for giving him information about protecting himself from the sun and for the fact that he now has fewer colds.
HealthMeet is a program developed by The Arc of the US in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and made available to The Arc of Alameda County and other member chapters around the country. In addition to nutrition information, we contracted with nurses to do health assessments on our clients and refered them to their doctors as necessary.
All in all, a successful program that proves again, The Arc Gets Results for its clients every day.