The Different Aspects of Health

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By Ailene Ignacio

On Saturday, April 20, 2013, APIOPA’s Fresh HiFi Team, led by Community Health Liaison Ailene Ignacio, and Fresh HiFi Interns Justin Sabino and Vanessa Hermoso, conducting a Healthy Eating Workshop for Historic Filipinotown community members. The topic? Healthy eating, of course. But here’s the twist: we didn’t just focus on one healthy eating-related topic; APIOPA had 5 different learning stations for their audience to explore!

What’s the number one cause of death for Filipinos in California? Heart disease. And besides the lack of exercise, I think it’s safe the say that the artery clogging, fatty, and heavily salted cuisine us Filipinos enjoy may have some part in this epidemic. Thus, APIOPA had two learning stations run by the American Heart Association (AHA) that geared towards hypertension. During the first learning station, participants were given blood pressure screenings as a way for them to know whether or not their blood pressure was fine, borderline hypertension, or at hypertension levels. Then, at the second learn station, AHA connected how one’s diet affects their blood pressure, and what foods they could eat to help participants from acquiring hypertension.

APIOPA also partnered with UCLA’s student group, Pilipinos for Community for Health (PCH), to bring forth two practical and realistic healthy alternatives to our favorite foods. For the first workshop, PCH focused on what makes Filipino dishes, such as sinigang, filled with so much fat, how such fat intake can damage the body, and how participants could cook such dishes and other non-Filipino dishes in a healthier manner. During their second workshop, participants were given a taste of the how much sugar they ingest when eating certain foods, what it does to the body, and how to use sugar in a healthier manner.

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Lastly, for the final learning station, APIOPA brought Joshua Jose, owner of the infamous Tribal Café on Temple Street, to do a green smoothie demonstration. Jose expanded on the importance of taking in vegetables especially to help with the body cleansing process. And of course, he also made green smoothies filled with foods including kale, spinach, cilantro, carrots, apples, bananas, and lots of ice! Ultimately, the take-home message: “Eat like a cow. Don’t eat a cow.”

For more information on Fresh HiFi and the Healthy Eating Workshop, please contact Ailene Ignacio via email at: aignacio@apiopa.org.

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