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Western Health Advantage is excited to present you with an opportunity to get fit, save lives, and Start Training! As long time supporters of the American Heart Association, we would like to encourage you to improve your cardiovascular health while making a difference in your community.

Join the Start Training team to meet new people, fight against heart disease and stroke, and train to complete the American River Parkway Half Marathon on May 2, 2015.

Start Training is geared towards walkers and runners of ALL abilities.
• No experience necessary
• Practices led by coaches from Dignity Health
• Weekly group trainings
• Modest fundraising minimum
• Fundraising support from American Heart Association Staff
• Earn prizes including training gear, race jersey, and more!

Training begins Saturday, January 31st!

For more details register for a January Information Session at Start Training or call  916.446-6505.

baby_toyTis’ the season for new toys to hit the store shelves, particularly for kids ages three and younger. Since this age group is more likely to put objects into their mouths, it’s important to check all features of new toys for possible choking hazards.

Below are some general guidelines from Kidshealth when shopping for toys this holiday season:

  • Toys made of fabric should be labeled as flame resistant or flame retardant.
  • Stuffed toys should be washable.
  • Painted toys should be covered with lead-free paint.
  • Art materials should say nontoxic.
  • Crayons and paints should say ASTM D-4236 on the package, which means that they’ve been evaluated by the American Society for Testing and Materials.

Reminder: Older toys and/or antiques may not always be the best gift. These types of toys may not meet safety standards and could contain harmful materials.

For more information, please visit http://kidshealth.org

World AIDS Day. December 1.

What is World AIDS Day?

  • World AIDS Day is held on 1 December each year and is an opportunity for people worldwide to unite in the fight against HIV, show their support for people living with HIV and to commemorate people who have died.

Why is World AIDS Day important?

  • World AIDS Day is important as it reminds the public and Government that HIV has not gone away – there is still a vital need to raise money, increase awareness, fight prejudice and improve education.

What should I do on World AIDS Day?

  • World AIDS Day is an opportunity for you to learn the facts about HIV and put your knowledge into action. If you understand how HIV is transmitted, how it can be prevented, and the reality of living with HIV today – you can use this knowledge to take care of your own health and the health of others, and ensure you treat everyone living with HIV fairly, and with respect and understanding.

Learn more here.


Western Health Advantage needs your help to turn holiday dreams into reality for the kids at the Sacramento Children’s Home. We are collecting items for the Sacramento Children’s Home through Monday, December 15.

  • Drop off items at: 2349 Gateway Oaks, Sacramento, CA 95833 between the hours of 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., Monday thru Friday.
  • Items must be new and unwrapped.
  • Accepted items are: New jackets, toys, bikes.
  • Gift cards are happily accepted. Suggestions: Wal-Mart, Target, Kohls, Old Navy. Barnes & Noble, McDonalds, Taco Bell, Raley’s and Safeway

Questions about donations? Please call Western Health Advantage Community Relations department at 916.563.2203.

Make a plan to stop smoking.

Make a plan to stop smoking.

Today is the Great American Smokeout, sponsored by the American Cancer Society. On this day, smokers are encouraged to make a plan to quit, or to plan in advance and quit smoking that day.

Are you ready to quit smoking? WHA can help!

If you’ve tried to quit smoking in the past and haven’t been able, you have good reason to take heart. Most studies show that people who have been successful tried multiple times. So don’t give up. Above all, remember this: If you quit, your body can start to repair itself. Within one year of quitting, your risk of developing heart disease drops by half. And 10 years after quitting, your risk of dying of lung cancer is no greater than that of someone who never smoked.

What can you do to quit? Examine the reasons you smoke, and start keeping track of the times and situations that trigger the habit. This will help you develop a strategy to thwart the urge. Set a quit date and get prepared. Tell your family and friends so they can support you through the process. Those with strong support networks have much higher success rates kicking the habit.

Help is available!

  1. Talk to your doctor: Make an appointment and tell them about your goal to stop smoking so they can recommend medications to help you quit.
  2. FREE Classes: As a WHA member, you have access to smoking cessation classes sponsored by our network’s medical groups, even those not connected to your primary care physician’s (PCP’s) medical group. Unless otherwise noted, most health programs or classes are FREE and you can join online. Learn more at mywha.org/classes.
  3. Visit Healthyroads: Register online at mywha.org/healthyroads for 24/7 access to wellness tools, such as a personal health assessment, customized meal and exercise plans, smoking cessation resources, health trackers, and much more.
  4. Online Resources: Take the time to visit the following websites. They offer an abundance of resources and can be found by visiting: American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, American Lung Association and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.



Take the first step to making healthier food choices by taking part in the American Heart Association’s National Eating Healthy Day on Wednesday, Nov. 5, 2014. On this day, Americans are encouraged to commit to healthier eating.

Here are 6 Tips to Help You Eat Healthier!


  • Limit Portions: Learning what a portion size actually is—and eating that amount—is tricky. People are notoriously bad at estimating what a cup of breakfast cereal looks like.
  • Don’t skip meals: If you’re starving, you’re more likely to eat an extra-large portion. For most people, the best plan is to eat three well-designed meals and one snack. “People need to eat a minimum of three times a day, avoiding going longer than five hours without eating,” says Nadine Uplinger, a spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association and director of the Gutman Diabetes Institute at the Albert Einstein Healthcare Network in Philadelphia.
  • Serving size vs. portion size: Serving sizes per container are listed on the nutrition facts label. For example, a small bag of pretzels may say that it contains two servings, so if you’re eating the whole bag—your portion size—you’d have to double the calorie, fat, and carbohydrate information per serving to know how much you’re consuming.
  • Develop good “eating out” habits: First, fill up your plate with green veggies, and get full on those before eating other food. Then, when ordering a meal, ask the server to only put half the meal on your plate and pack the other half to go.
  • Plan your meals: Write down what you eat, think before you eat, and then eat slowly. Snacks should typically contain no more than 100 calories and 15 grams of carbohydrate, so plan ahead. Some good choices include three cups of plain popcorn, 17 small grapes, a 6-ounce container of artificially-sweetened yogurt, 15 mini pretzels, or a tennis-ball size piece of fruit,.
  • Change plates to lose weight: You can drop 18 pounds this year just by changing plates, according to the Small Plate Movement. Start with a plate that’s between 9 and 10 inches in diameter, closer to the size of your grandmother’s china.

Source: www.health.com

WHA is here to help you!

Need help? We love to help!

We want to help you get the most out of your health plan. Here are some helpful tips:

  • Need to reprint your ID card? You can download and print a new one by logging in to your MyWHA account. Or download the WHA Mobile App and you’ll always have your WHA benefit information with you. Visit MyWHA.org/WHAMobile for more information.
  • Need a new doctor? Visit MyWHA.org, then click “Change Your Doctor” from MyWHA tools.
  • Want to provide feedback? Visit mywha.org/securemessage and choose “Member Services” to drop us a note.
  • Have questions about how your WHA high-deductible health plan and your health savings account work? Visit MyWHA.org/HSA for information on how to maximize these tools and get the most out of your health care.
  • Do you know what doctor visits and tests are FREE? Learn more at mywha.org/guidelines.

You should always feel free to call Member Services 888.563.2250 and know we look forward to hearing from you. We know you have choices, and we are thankful you chose WHA.


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