Hundreds on hand for Vibrant Life Health Expo
Sunday, September 23, 2012
By Don Aines
Nonagenarians Hazel Vetter and Leona Thomas would appear to be two women who could teach others a lot about living a vibrant life, having nearly two centuries of life experiences between them.
On Sunday, hundreds of people took part in the Vibrant Life Health Expo and 5K Run at the Review and Herald Publishing Association on West Oak Ridge Drive, learning about the practices that can help people achieve long lives.
Vetter is 98 and just weeks away from her 99th birthday. Thomas is 93.
“My lifestyle is a vegan one. It hasn’t always been,” Vetter said.
In addition to eating healthfully and getting good rest, she and Thomas get exercise.
“We walk about a mile every day,” Vetter said.
Thomas said she also follows a meatless diet, although that wasn’t always the case.
The Review & Herald has been hosting a 5K run for years, but this year added the Vibrant Life Expo, named for the magazine it publishes, said event coordinator Candy DeVore. More than 160 runners signed up for that part of the event, she said.
“From the beginning, it has always had a whole-person approach to health,” said Vibrant Life Editor Heather Quintana. That approach looks at mind, body and spirit, she said.
The holistic approach is followed by many health-conscious people today, but Vibrant Life was ahead of its time, as it has been published since 1885, Quintana said.
There were stations and booths for adults and children that emphasized exercise, temperance, rest, nutrition, sunlight, water, air and trust in God.
Gail Hanson works in human resources at the Review & Herald, but on Sunday, she was showing what a year’s worth of cigarette tar looks like and testing people’s lung capacity.
“I did great ... It’s really cool,” said Karlleen Stockman of Sharpsburg after taking the test.
Stockman ran in the 5K, although her time was about a minute off what she wanted.
“But it was good enough to win for my age group,” Stockman said later, holding her trophy for the women’s 50-to-59 category.
Doug Williams said he suffered a massive heart attack two years ago. On Sunday, he was testing visitors’ body mass index at the nutrition booth.
“It was what I was putting in my body” that caused his heart attack, he said.
Now 55 pounds lighter, he eats as much as he wants and doesn’t gain weight because he is eating differently.
“It all comes from a plant-based diet,” Williams said.
It’s not just how much sleep you get, but when you get it, said Ron and Jeri Pride, who were staffing the rest booth. The hours of sleep before midnight are more valuable than those after midnight, Ron said.
“We need to build time for rest and stick with it,” said Ron Pride.
“God created the world in six days and on the seventh day, He created rest,” Jeri Pride said.