On Wednesday September 20th the Senior Action Network sponsored its 6th Annual “Living Well Living Long” conference, held this year at the Westminster Presbyterian church in Olympia. This year’s theme was “Healthy, Easy Living” and over 20 different professionals from a wide range of Health & Aging fields presented current information and resources to a crowd of almost 160 attendees.
This FREE conference (courtesy of over 30 participating SAN Businesses) kicked off with a fascinating presentation by Dr. Ana Mihalcea on the subject of “Telomeres”. Following Dr. Mihalcea’s talk, participants were able to choose from five different topics and attend a 30-minute “break out” session of their choice to learn about “Writing Your Own Story From Beginning to End”, Financial Planning for Retirement, How to Find Support and Legal matters.
The 2nd Keynote speaker saw a return of a former presenter, Vicky McNealy, on “Inflammation, Food & Chronic Disease”. Almost ALL of the feedback on McNealy’s talk rated it as “Excellent”, “Very Informative” and “Good Information”. She certainly helped most of the audience see the WHY behind the value of making good food choices!
Following Ms. McNealy was the second series of Break Out sessions, piggybacking upon Vicky’s talk with sessions covering “Nutrition That Makes Sense”. Attendees learned about new science (Nutrigenomics), “Food Irritants”, “Cooking for One”, “Antioxidants” and the Olympia Food Coop taught how to shop for your budget & health!
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At 12:15 during the lunch break (provided by Cyndi’s Quality Catering) many of the sponsoring businesses were able to introduce themselves to the audience, letting everyone know they were available to provide resources and answer questions. After a very ‘healthy’ lunch, Megan Bennett from Olympia Transitional Care & Rehabilitation taught the group some easy, simple relaxation techniques during her presentation, “Relaxation Strategies to Benefit Your Health”.
The final series of Break Out sessions covered “Taking Care of You and Your Body”. Chair Yoga and Tai Ji Quan were popular as always, in addition to “Pelvic Floor”, “Jin Shin Jyutsu” along with a demonstration by Providence: “I’ve Fallen and I CAN Get Up!”.
Throughout the day, Providence Sound Home Care and Assured Home Health held Fall Risk Assessments in the church library. Closing out the day, Linda Terry, Cognitive Trainer and owner of STEP, engaged the crowd with “Social Connections Create a Stronger Brain”, where most of us learned some fun techniques to remember names!
The host location, Westminster Presbyterian Church, was a fabulous venue and without their gracious assistance this event would not have been possible. A special “thank you” goes out to the Living Waters Church for the generous use of their parking lot for overflow parking. This year’s Living Well Living Long conference was a huge success — planning is already underway for next year’s event! Don’t miss it!