Health expo puts age to the test

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We’ve heard the old adage: an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but for Danielle Elias, she takes her health to a whole new level.

“We do everything natural, I never ever take any drugs or medicine,” she says. “Medicine is really bad for the body. Pain medication especially is really bad for the liver.”

You won’t find Advil or Tylenol in her cabinets at home, but jars of raw honey, garlic, spices and a book filled with tried and true home remedies for the sick.

Elias was one of eight health practitioners at the Red Willow Community Church on Sunday for a health expo.

As flu season is right around the corner, Elias says the power of water is all it takes to combat the inevitable illness.

“I’m demonstrating hydro-therapy and the benefits of water internally and outward,” she says. “Hydro-therapy works really well to cure colds, sore throats, headaches and cramps.”

Her booth, focused on water, had participants sit in a comfy chair with their feet in a water basin. Because it’s only a simulation, no actual water was used in any of the steps.

Taking a tensor in her hand, she instructs a woman to wet it with cold water and wrap it around her neck. On top of the tensor a plastic bread wrapper is fastened followed by a wool sock.

Blankets wrap tightly around the ailing individual, with the goal of inducing an intense sweat session. By the end of the hour the person should feel less ill, she said.

“You really want them to sweat. So they do this for about an hour and then they go and cool off,” she says. “It works really well.”

The hot water bath is one of the many home-based remedies Elias has used in her own household, passing the tradition onto her three adult children.

She said when she heard about the expo, she knew she wanted to get involved.

Marian Rochford, event organizer, says it’s the first health expo the church has hosted and expects many more to take place in the future. The event kicked off at 2 p.m. and by 3 p.m. the event saw more than 50 people walk through the doors.

“The turnout has been really great,” she says. “We said we’d be happy with just one person attending, but we’ve had a great response.”

Participants walked through various booths where they had their blood pressure tracked, weight and height logged and athletic ability tested. At the end their results were put into a computer that compared their actual age to their fitness age.

Beatrice Ingran, 64-year-old resident, says she came to the event to put her health to the test. She says the fitness booth was her favourite, where participants stepped up and down on a stair for three minutes.

Fitness trainers would then time how long it took for breathing to return back to normal.

“I’m glad that I came because it gave me the information that I need to help me,” she says.

Her results said her age should be 71 based on the input the computer received.

Afterwards participants met with nurses and consultants to talk about their results and how to improve their health outcomes.

Rochford says she’s still determining when the next health expo will take place.

“We received a really positive response so we might make it every six months, or we might do it once a year.”

For more information visit http://www.redwillow.org/

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Dayla Lahring

Dayla Lahring joined the St. Albert Gazette in 2017. She writes about business, health, general news and features. She also contributes photographs.