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Our Health Community – Healthiest State Initiative

Abbie SawyerOur Health Community

In this edition of Our Health Community, we look beyond Greater Des Moines to the whole state of Iowa. Our friends at the Healthiest State Initiative have much planned to keep Iowans moving and living healthfully, especially during the month of October. Ready why below, as well as how you can get involved in the momentum to make Iowa the healthiest state in the nation.

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Tell us a bit about Healthiest State Initiative. When did this start and why? What is it today?

The Healthiest State Initiative is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization driven by the goal to make Iowa the healthiest state in the nation. We work with communities, schools, workplaces individuals and both public and private organizations to help Iowans improve their health and overall wellbeing, and ultimately achieve our goal.

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October is Healthiest State Month in Iowa. How are you celebrating?

Each week in the month of October will be dedicated to each of the individual numbers in the 5-2-1-0 Healthy Choices Count! program.

October 1-7  |  Focus on getting 1 hour of physical activity each day. Participate in the 8th Annual Healthiest State Walk on October 3.

October 8-14  |  Focus on eating 5 fruits or vegetables each day. Participate in Local Foods Day, sponsored by Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, on October 11.

October 15-21  |  Focus on 2 hours or less of screen time each day. Reduce screen time by reading a book or participate in an activity – like a puzzle or game – that doesn’t require a screen.

October 22-28  |  Focus on drinking 0 sugary beverages and more water each day. Water is fuel for your body! To keep your body running smoothly, drink plenty of water throughout the day!

October 30  |  The Healthiest State Month will conclude with the 5-2-1-0 Healthy Choices Count! Summit at Des Moines University. You can register at

We want you to celebrate with us! That’s why we’ve created toolkits for schools/child care centers, communities, work places and health care sites that are full of ideas to participate in each week, printable resources and sample social media posts. Use the hashtag #HealthyChoicesCount on social media to let us know you’re celebrating with us! You can find all of those toolkits and more information at

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Moving every day is part of Healthiest State Initiative’s 5-2-1-0 challenge.

How does HSI help people?

The Healthiest State Initiative helps people by connecting them to resources through our programs, events and partner organizations.

  • Do you want to make your town more walkable? Apply to join the Iowa Walking College.
  • Does your community need expert help to improve the overall health and wellness environment for your citizens? We can connect you with Healthy Hometown, powered by Wellmark.
  • Does your school, child care center, or health care site want to implement the 5-2-1-0 Healthy Choices Count! program? We have resources to help you.
  • Do you want to make fresh produce more accessible to low-income Iowans at your local farmers market? We can enroll your site in the Double Up Food Bucks program.
  • Are you organizing a health and wellness related event? Request an HSI endorsement and we can help you promote it.
  • And so much more! Visit

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How can people help HSI?

Iowans can be a part of the Healthiest State Initiative in many ways! Participate in our big events, like Healthiest State Month and the Healthiest State Annual Walk, or join us at our 5-2-1-0 Summit in October or Healthiest State Annual Conference in May. You can also nominate a workplace, school or individual for our upcoming Healthiest State Awards. But we don’t want the work to end when our events are over – in order to achieve our goal, we need Iowans taking steps towards healthier lifestyles every day! Invite your co-worker to take a walk during your break, prepare healthy snacks for your family, choose water over soda or turn off the TV during meal time.

Stay up to date with the Healthiest State Initiative by subscribing to our monthly newsletter and following us on social media. Use the hashtags #HealthyChoicesCount and #HealthiestState to let us know how you are supporting the Healthiest State Initiative!

What do you love about Iowa?

We love living in Iowa because there are so many opportunities to live a healthy and active lifestyle. There are 60+ state parks, 100+ farmers markets and 2,000+ miles of trails to explore across Iowa. We live in a beautiful state with so many opportunities for outdoor recreation plus access to fresh produce right in our backyards.

About Our Health Community

“Our Health Community” is a blog series by Capital Chiropractic & Rehabilitation Center designed to celebrate health-centered causes, services, and businesses in Greater Des Moines (DSM). Explore “Our Health Community.”

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