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Expo to Showcase Latest Health Innovations

Media Release 24 February 2006

Expo to Showcase Latest Health Innovations

The Kidney Foundation and Waitemata District Health Board and its Primary Health Organisation (PHO) network* are joining forces to promote the launch of “National Drink Water Week” from March 20 – 26.

The launch will take place at a ‘Health & Lifestyle Expo’ in Waitakere City, which will be opened by the Minister of Health Pete Hodgson on Sunday March 19.

Waitemata DHB Chief Executive Dwayne Crombie says the launch of National Drink Water Week is a perfect way to demonstrate the DHB’s commitment to its Beverage Guidelines* which aim to reduce obesity and diabetes.

Both organisations have a commitment to promoting healthy lifestyles and recommend against a high daily intake of carbonated sugar drinks and fruit juices.

Kidney Foundation Education Manager Carmel Gregan-Ford says the rise in adult and childhood obesity is also associated with a rise in diabetes, the biggest cause of kidney disease in New Zealand.

“Today we have all these concerns about everything we should and shouldn’t be eating, but here we have a free, easily accessible supply of a substance that can only help keep us healthy.”

The launch of the week will be the first event in the two-day expo which will bring together several health groups from across the Waitemata district of North Shore City, Rodney and Waitakere City. At nearly half a million people it is New Zealand’s largest DHB.

Dr Crombie says serving the largest population of any DHB places considerable responsibility to be a healthy role model. Working with national organisations to promote health for people in the district is a great opportunity to make a difference.

HealthWEST PHO’s WOW (Wellness Out West) Bus and Sport Waitakere’s Active Movement programme for under-five-year-olds will also be launched by the Minister of Health at the same time [NOTE: see P 6 of attached Media Info Pack for further details].


Q & A:

* Which local Primary Health Organisations are involved?

HealthWEST PHO, ProCare Network North, Harbour PHO, Coast to Coast PHO/Te Ha, Waiora HealthCare PHO, Te Puna PHO, plus Maori health funding agency Tihi Ora MAPO.

What is the Health & Lifestyle Expo ‘Just for the Health of It’?

The Health and Lifestyle Expo ‘Just for Health of It’ is a joint initiative between Waitemata District Health Board, local PHOs and Tihi Ora MAPO.

It aims to inspire wellbeing by delivering health information and advice in new and interactive ways and entry is FREE. More than 100 exhibitors and around 10,000 participants are expected.

There will be free demonstrations, free health checks, service and product displays, health & lifestyle activities, a conference and seminars, celebrities, heroes and more.

Why does the body need water?

The human body needs water to replenish the blood and other fluids in order to function properly. Along with water, the body also needs electrolytes, which are salts normally found in blood, other fluids, and cells.

Water regulates the body’s temperature through perspiration, removes wastes via the urine and carries nutrients and other substances throughout the body. A large amount of water is transported to and from organs and tissues through the body.

Blood itself contains a large quantity of water. The kidneys filter around 120 mls of fluid from the blood every minute or 180 litres a day. So a healthy person’s urine output (1 or 2 litres a day) is a very small fraction of the total quantity of fluid filtered by the kidneys. Most is reabsorbed back into the bloodstream and used elsewhere in the body.

*What are Waitemata DHB’s Beverage Guidelines?

In a first in New Zealand, a set of guidelines was launched in May 2005 to help reduce the almost 6kg of sugar the average kiwi child consumes annually from the beverages they drink.

Formulated for schools, the Beverage Guidelines use a ‘traffic light’ system that indicates the healthiest drinks schools can stock for their students.

Developed by Waitemata DHB the guidelines were critiqued by The National Heart Foundation of New Zealand.

Under the guidelines, beverages classified as ‘green’ represent a healthier choice, offering some nutritional value and containing less kilojoules than ‘amber’ or ‘red’ beverages.

Beverages that fall in to the red category - such as full-fat milk drinks and sweetened carbonated drinks - have limited nutritional value and contribute excess energy.

The guidelines encourage schools to replace ‘red’ beverages with those from the ‘amber’ or ‘green’ category.

Only water and plain reduced fat milk and calcium enriched soy drinks are included in the “promote frequently” ‘green’ category.



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