Weather Forecast


Improving health through Go Red Better U Heart challenge

The American Heart Association, in partnership with the Brainerd Lakes Heart & Vascular Center at Essentia Health - St. Joseph’s Medical Center, announced it is seeking applicants for the first Go Red Better U Heart Health Challenge.

Join Dave Endicott, Principal of Eagle View Elementary, Becky Flansburg, LAMS Communications, Rosalind Haapajoki, Financial Planner with Palen, Hammes and Associates, Steve Mau, owner and president of Brainerd General Rental and chair of the Brainerd Lakes Chamber, Renee Richardson, senior reporter at the Brainerd Dispatch, and Ken Thomas, morning personality on WJJY-FM 106.7, and apply to be selected to participate in the Go Red Better U Heart Health Challenge presented by Essentia Health.

Applications are due March 12, 2012. Applicants will be selected by a committee based on a variety of criteria. Selected participants will be notified the week of March 19. The challenge kick-off will be April 2.

When asked why she has accepted the Better U Challenge, Richardson says, “I am looking forward to participating in the Better U Challenge as an opportunity to look beneath the skin’s surface, gain greater insight into heart-healthy lifestyle choices and be inspired to guard against heart disease. The Centers for Disease Control reports cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the nation, equal to 2,200 deaths per day. That’s cutting too many life stories much too short.”

The participants will experience an eight-week heart health makeover where each individual will have an initial consultation and check-up with the staff at the Brainerd Lakes Heart & Vascular Center at Essentia Health - St. Joseph’s Medical Center, consult with registered dietitians, and have an opportunity to discuss heart health with cardiologists Dr. Michael Rich and Dr. Mark Johnson. Each participant will be involved in an initial wellness screening where height, weight, blood pressure, cholesterol, -HDL/LDL, triglycerides, body mass index and blood glucose is measured.

Too few people realize heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women, more than all forms of cancer and the next five leading causes of death combined. But, the good news is heart disease can largely be prevented.

“Through the Better U Heart Health Challenge, we want people to become more aware of the risks of heart disease and how they can be prevented or even reversed,” stated Rebecca Wirtz, Brainerd Lakes Heart & Vascular Center nurse practitioner.

To apply, visit, and complete an application. For more information about the Go Red Better U Heart Heath Challenge, applicants can contact Jeri Hughes at 828-7583 or email Mailed applications can be sent to: Essentia Health – St. Joseph’s Medical Center, 523 N. Third St., Brainerd MN 56401.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
(218) 855-5889