Real People. Real Change. Lifestyle Change Award
Make your healthy change today!
Submit a nomination by June 30, 2019 to be considered for the Real People. Real Change. campaign!
The Real People. Real Change. Lifestyle Change Awards, presented by UnitedHealthcare, recognizes those that have made a positive changes to improve their quality of life and health by focusing on one or more of Life’s Simple 7. You have from January 2019 through June 30, 2019 to apply. This means that individuals who haven’t yet made a significant lifestyle change, still have time to make a change and WIN!
Nominations for Real People. Real Change. can be submitted by friends, co-workers or relatives, and individuals can nominate themselves. Four winners will be chosen by a committee of past winners based on healthy changes in one or more from each of the Life’s Simple 7 categories that help indicate ideal cardiovascular health:
A grand prize winner of $2,500 will be selected from the four winners through a popular vote on social media. The three remaining winners will receive $500 each. All winners will be recognized and prizes presented at the 2019 Indianapolis Heart Walk in September.
WINNER: Eat Better
Jessie and her husband have worked together to become healthier. Their journey began in March 2018 when her husband was diagnosed with high blood pressure and Jessie was told she should lose weight before starting a family. Jessie overhauled the couple’s diet, preparing all of their meals for the week in advance. She focused on lean proteins, fruits, vegetables and whole grains, tracking her food intake on a daily basis. Jessie has also started a walking routine.
Since March, Jessie lost 50 lbs., while her husband lost 70 lbs. and saw his blood pressure return to normal.
Jessica’s sedentary lifestyle and unhealthy eating habits led her weight to reach 240 lbs. She knew she had to get off of this unhealthy road for herself and her family.
Jessica joined a gym and started exercising 20-30 minutes after work each day. As she became more fit, she increased her exercise to 45-60 minutes, expanding from the elliptical machine to jogging and biking. She also changed her eating habits. She eliminated late-night snacking by chewing gum instead. She started drinking more water and cut all added sugars from her diet. Jessica began planning out meals for the entire week in advance, focusing on healthy proteins, vegetables and a small portion of carbohydrates.
Jessica lost 50 lbs., and the healthy lifestyle changes helped her husband lose 30 lbs.
Susan was dealing with a number of health issues, including taking medication to manage her cholesterol and blood sugar, when she and a friend decided to get healthier.
The two started a walking program last fall and decided to train for a mini marathon. Their dedication paid off as both completed a half marathon earlier this year.
In addition to regularly exercising, Susan adopted a diet low in carbohydrates. The lifestyle changes led to a weight loss of 63 lbs. and her cholesterol and blood sugar are now under control without medication.
Nikita started smoking in her 30s, smoking 2-3 cigarettes per day. After 10 years of smoking, she started having issues with her health in 2017. Her kids encouraged her to stop smoking.
In early January 2018, Nikita stopped smoking cold turkey and hasn’t had a cigarette since.
Manage Blood Pressure
John was prediabetic, had pre-hypertensive blood pressure and had a very high triglyceride count. He was prescribed statins to help control his triglycerides, but John decided to change his lifestyle instead.
John started walking at least three miles per day, incorporating swimming on days when the weather doesn’t cooperate, and he has changed his diet to reduce sweets and increase his intake of vegetables. He eats salad 2-3 times per week.
As a result, John is no longer prediabetic or pre-hypertensive (high blood pressure). He also lowered his elevated cholesterol into the normal range without the need for medication.
Motoko has been motivated to be active as she recovers strength from a series of heart surgeries.
She had the first of three open-heart surgeries in 2012 to repair an aortic aneurysm and replace her aortic valve. Follow-up surgeries took place in 2014 and 2015.
In 2015, she was hospitalized for close to three months and she underwent three series of heart and vascular surgeries. Due to a rare infection, she had only 70 percent blood flow to her legs.
Motoko pushed herself to walk. It took a year until she could walk one mile. She kept walking and practicing yoga regularly. After two years, blood flow to her legs increased to 85 percent.
Today, she is taking yoga teacher training classes to become a yoga instructor. Her dream is to help those who are going through heart issues by practicing gentle yoga.
Reduce Blood Sugar
Maria is an inspiring story of how a young mom, working full time and managing a busy schedule can still make time to focus on her own health and wellness. Two years ago, Maria found herself in a situation where her body mass index, blood sugar and cholesterol levels were all higher than recommended levels.
Maria increased her physical activity and improved her diet to improve all areas of her health. She has steadily increased her time in the gym and now works out for 90 minutes, five times per week. She eliminated processed foods from her diet and now eats lots of fresh vegetables and lean proteins.
Maria has lost more than 20 lbs., reduced her cholesterol levels and moved her blood sugar levels from a prediabetic range into the normal range.
Throughout the process, she has been an inspiration to friends and family.