National Network Supports Canadians Dealing with Death
TORONTO, Feb. 6 /CNW/ - Canadians have a new source of
information and support about death and dying with today's
launch of the Canadian Virtual Hospice at www.virtualhospice.ca
The new bilingual website, launched at a news conference
at Riverview Health Centre in Winnipeg this morning, provides
high quality health information about death and dying,
as well as a forum for Canadians to share their experiences
with illness or grief.
"People often don't know what to expect when they learn
that they have been diagnosed with a life-limiting illness.
They may feel confused, fearful, and uncertain about what
lies ahead. If ever they needed information and support,
it's at this stressful time in their lives," said Dr.
Harvey Chochinov, Canada Research Chair in Palliative
Care; Director, Manitoba
Palliative Care Research Unit, CancerCare Manitoba; and,
co-chair of the Canadian Virtual Hospice. "Unfortunately,
in our society, matters of death and dying are very often
thought to be unspeakable. I hope that the Canadian Virtual
Hospice will help patients and families feel more supported
and less alone."
Targeted at patients, their family and friends, health
care professionals, and health care volunteers, the Canadian
Virtual Hospice is a unique venue for the sharing of credible
information and support, eliminating barriers of time
and place through the use of the Internet to improve palliative
care in Canada.
"The goal of palliative care is to provide comfort and
maintain the highest possible quality of life for as long
as life remains," said the Honourable Dr. Rey Pagtakhan,
Minister for Western Economic Diversification.
"The Canadian Virtual Hospice will help people to cope
with the pain, distress and many other physical, emotional
and spiritual problems that are present with a terminal
illness. The Government of Canada is proud to support
this important initiative and to build on the Canadian
"This innovative approach to palliative care will enhance
the living of both the patient and their families. Living
well until the end is the goal of palliative care. The
Canadian Virtual Hospice will make that living easier,"
said the Honourable Sharon Carstairs, P.C., former Minister
with Special Responsibility for Palliative Care.
The Canadian Virtual Hospice provides detailed information
about physical symptoms of illness and deals with some
of the emotional reactions and spiritual questions often
experienced by palliative care patients and their families.
The website includes chat rooms, bulletin board discussion
areas, and a place for people to email questions to a
health care professional.
Health care professionals working in the field of palliative
care will have the opportunity to share research results
and benefit from access to expert opinion from Canadian
"This new website will help provide
individuals, their families, trained volunteers and health
care providers with emotional and spiritual support and
practical help for coping with terminal illnesses and
grief," said Diane McGifford, minister for Advanced Education
and MLA for Lord Roberts. "Manitoba Health is proud to
sponsor an initiative that will help so many people."
to Avoid "Taxing" Headaches with T4s
"Knowing what information is included - and possibly
missing - on your T4 statement is crucial," says
ADP payroll expert
TORONTO, Feb. 16 /CNW/ - Approximately three in four working
Canadians have now received their annual T4 statement,
setting Canada's annual tax season in motion. According
to ADP Canada, the country's leader in outsourced employer
services (including payroll and T4 preparation), Canadians
who don't bother to check their T4 statement do so at
"It's important for every employee to understand
and check the information on their T4," said Don
McGuire, Vice President Client Services, ADP Canada. "Errors
in basic items such as your name, address and social insurance
number, or differences that you can't reconcile with the
year-to- date totals on your final pay stub in 2003 could
signal a problem that needs to be corrected."
Errors and discrepancies on T4s can mean late filings
and delays in getting a tax return or paying taxes on
time. While tax season is an annual headache for some
employers, for the 35,000 employers that use ADP Canada
for T4 preparation, it's business as usual. ADP has processed
more than three million T4s this year, or roughly one
in four T4s in the private sector.
Interview an expert from ADP and find out:
- What are the common mistakes or oversights Canadians
make when reading their T4?
- What should people do if their T4 contains errors? Or
if they don't get a T4?
- How has the T4 changed this year?
- How can employers make life easier on themselves during
- When should an employer begin preparing for year-end?
OTTAWA, Feb. 19 /CNW/ - The attached information items,
dealing with winter emergencies, will interest homeowners
in your area. They are part of a series of information
pieces available on the CMHC web site. (www.cmhc.gc.ca)
Please feel free to use any or all of the pieces you think
would be of use and or interest.
About Your House CE 24
Backup Power For Your Home
You rely on many appliances and systems in your
home for your health, comfort and security. Most depend
completely on utility-supplied electricity.
It makes sense to have a backup system that will keep
your family comfortable and your home safe in a power
failure. These Top Ten Tips are a brief guide to backup
systems. Six basic types of backup systems are described
in Table 1.
Careful preparation is essential to select, buy and
install a backup system. Don't leave it to the last
minute - you and your family have to learn how to use
the system. And during a power failure, you may not
be able to find suitable, reasonably priced equipment,
or have it installed properly. Keep the system simple
so you and your family can operate and maintain it.
emergency system must work reliably when needed.
Keep the Heat In
In most of Canada, the main purpose of a backup system
is to keep the house warm (and sometimes to keep the
basement dry). You have to be able to keep heat in,
prevent unnecessary air infiltration, and prevent pipes
from freezing. The starting point is proper insulation
and air sealing, before you consider your backup power
needs. To obtain information on energy efficiency contact:
Energy Publications Office of Energy Efficiency c/o
Canada Communication Group Ottawa ON K1A 0S9
to Efficient Appliances
Your backup system will do the most good if it is powering
efficient appliances. Use an electrician's ammeter to
find out how much power each appliance uses - its current
draw in amps. The energy requirements of some appliances
will surprise you. Replace the inefficient appliances
with efficient appliances. Change to energy-efficient
light bulbs like compact fluorescents. When buying new
equipment, get the most efficient possible - for
example, an energy-efficient refrigerator or a lower-volume,
smaller horsepower well pump or sump pump. Make sure
your furnace fan motor is the most efficient available.
When you use a backup system you must manage your electrical
load. You will have to operate even your most efficient
appliances as little as possible so that you have essential
power as long as possible.
Your House Is All-Electric
Don't use a backup generator to heat your house if it
is all-electric, or to power resistance heaters, such
as baseboards and fan heaters (a very poor choice -
only 20 per cent efficiency). Install a wood, oil, natural
gas, or propane stove that uses a chimney. Or install
a pellet, oil, natural gas or propane stove that vents
through the wall. Fan-assisted air circulation makes
auxiliary heating devices more effective. You may need
backup power for a fan, stove motors and pumps. You
must install a hearth and chimney for a wood stove,
and have a supply of dry wood. You will need backup
power for a pellet stove - but a pellet stove uses a
less-costly through-the-wall chimney. Propane, natural
gas heaters and oil heaters use through-the-wall chimneys,
and need a reliable fuel source. Check delivery with
your local fuel supplier Some oil-fired furnaces and
space heaters can provide both hot water and space heat.
Some of these appliances are suitable for cooking and
keeping food warm.
Most fireplaces are not very effective. They may heat
you and one room. But they suck air from other rooms
and actually cool the rest of the house. Many fireplaces
are not built for continuous use, or are in poor condition,
and can be a real fire hazard.
What Needs Power
Your backup must provide power for the circuits you
depend on for comfort, safety and security. Decide what
you must keep running in the event of a power outage.
You may find you don't need an elaborate backup. If
you only need your sump pump, a small gasoline-powered
pump could be simpler and cheaper than a full backup
system. Critical loads are the essential loads.
They might include lights, refrigerator-freezer, microwave,
sump pump, furnace, well pump, garage door opener, and
the home office. Your backup power system's capacity
is the maximum power draw (in kilowatts) of all the
fixtures and appliances that have to be served at one
time, including higher startup loads. Remember: ventilation
and fresh air supply can also be important loads.
To determine the size of your backup power system:
- Identify the critical loads that you really need,
and check whether they can be safely served by alternatives
that don't require electricity. For example, a properly
vented stove fuelled by wood, oil, or gas could substitute
for your furnace.
- Total the wattage of the lights and appliances on
the circuits you'd like to power
- Check the labels or owner's manuals for each appliance's
- Add about 25 per cent as a reserve for the startup
power needed for most electrical devices. This may not
be enough for some furnaces and well pumps. Motor startups
can draw as much as three to five times more power,
especially from cold - making a 2,500- watt generator
borderline for starting an 800 watt furnace motor (ask
about "slow start" motor ] options that draw
less startup current.) The total will probably be between
1,500 and 5,000 watts. However a basic system for efficient
lights and a radio will require much less, say 100-300
a Backup System
Some of the systems (see Backup Power Systems table)
include battery storage and a battery charger and an
inverter. The inverter converts 12 volt DC battery power
to standard 110 or 220 volt AC power. These systems
can also recharge the batteries using solar panels,
a generator and your vehicle, or your vehicle alone
(but remember that unless you have an RV your car battery
is not a deep cycle type and should not be allowed to
go flat). The more expensive systems can power an entire,
An electrician or electrical-contractor should install
and prepare your backup system to make sure it is safe
for your family and your home. You will need a manual
transfer switch to send electricity from either the
municipal power supply or your backup to the vital circuits.
The switches cost from $100 to $230. Some residential
uninterruptible power systems are pre-assembled on wall
mounting boards, with all the necessary safety disconnects
and code- approved wiring already done. More sophisticated
inverter power panels that automatically flip the transfer
switch and start the backup can cost $3,000 just for
the panel with the breakers and an inverter. It is a
good idea for an electrician to check wiring and grounding,
and determine if you need spike protection. In rural
areas, voltage fluctuations and even over-voltages that
can damage sensitive equipment are not uncommon. Never
connect a backup power system without a transfer switch
that disconnects your home from the municipal power
supply. This is to protect electric utility crews working
on your lines.
Use Unvented Appliances Indoors
Don't use unvented combustion appliances, such as barbecues,
cook stoves, fondues, propane or kerosene heaters and
lamps inside your house. They burn up available oxygen.
They produce CO2 (carbon dioxide) and other combustion
gases and fumes. Some produce huge quantities of colourless,
odourless and deadly carbon monoxide. Sterno cookers,
fondues, and charcoal-burning devices are especially
dangerous. Never use them indoors. Room ventilation
won't get rid of fumes from unvented appliances. Never
use them inside your house. Use portable propane or
naphtha cookstoves, heaters and lamps outside only.
There is a very real risk of fire, explosion, asphyxiation
or poisoning from fumes.
Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms
Install battery-powered smoke alarms and carbon monoxide
alarms. They are inexpensive and reliable and they can
save your life. Do you have spare batteries?
Your System Regularly
Regularly test your backup system to make sure it can
start your critical loads and keep them running. Remember
to disconnect your main breaker before starting your
backup system, or you can use an auxiliary circuit panel.
Auxiliary panels for backup power prevent electrical
utility field crews from being electrocuted by your
home power systems. They should be activated by a transfer
switch and wired by an electrician. Note that modern
inverters can make it possible to use variable speed
DC generators which charge batteries directly and use
half as much fuel as a constant-speed AC generator.
They can produce very high quality AC power, which is
crucial for sensitive electronic controls, provided
that the inverter is manufactured by an established
company and produces sine wave or modified sine wave
outputs. To protect sensitive equipment, such as computers,
from power surges generator owners should run
these loads with a pure sine wave inverter instead of
directly through the generator. If you are counting
on your generator or inverter to power critical house
systems during a power failure, test beforehand to make
sure that the quantity and quality of power produced
will handle the appliances you need to run
Maintenance Tips (typical 5,000 watt gasoline engine).
These instructions are for maintenance of a modern 3,000
to 5,000 watt, air-cooled, gasoline engine generator for
residential service. Most points, however, apply to all
generators. Remember: gasoline and diesel
fuels require special care for proper and safe storage
so they don't become unusable because gums and gels form
or they are contaminated by water and dirt. Special additives
can prevent these problems.
Is your generator wiring safely insulated AND properly grounded?
- Disconnect main breaker (and non-critical circuits) before
- Connect auxiliary breaker panel to generator output. Observe
- Never refuel engine while it is running. Fire Hazard!
- Once you have started your generator, do not start all
at once. Turn them on one at a time. Avoid using the biggest
- Most generators are not designed to work inside your home.
They should be placed outside, but protected from the weather
to avoid carburetor or
- A generator should not be left running without someone
supervise. It may overheat and cause a fire. Always have
a fire extinguisher
- If your generator causes a fire, your fire insurance may
not pay if
your generator was not CSA approved or was not installed
by a master
After First Five Hours
- Change oil. Use 10W30 motor oil or 5W30. Use synthetic
oil to prolong engine
life and ease starting in cold weather.
After Every 50 hours
- Change oil.
After Four Months
- Start engine and run for 15 to 20 minutes with electrical
load to maintain
engine and generator.
Annual-Fall is Best
- Start engine and run with electrical load until it runs
out of fuel-
this can take all day.
- Refuel with fresh fuel (regular unleaded).
- Clean and lubricate battery terminals with wire brush
jelly if there is corrosion.
- Inspect air and fuel filters and fuel shutoff for cleanliness.
Every Five Years
- Replace battery, air filter, fuel filter.
- Replace fuel lines if deteriorated.
- Check oil level with every tank of fuel used.
- Use a fuel stabiliser for fuel storage of up to one year.
- If not using fuel stabiliser, do not store or use fuel
more than one
month old (stale gasoline is not a dependable fuel).
- Keep generator fuel tank full to reduce condensation in
- Keep a spare spark plug and wrench nearby.
- Have the generator tuned if it has been used extensively
About Your House
When You Must Leave Your House Due to a Prolonged Winter
The 1998 Ice
Storm caused extensive damage throughout eastern Canada.
lost electric power and had to leave their homes were particularly
If you must
leave your home for more than 24 hours because of power
failure, here are some simple things to do to prevent house
- Turn off water supply at water service entrance (the valve
located at the front of the house, near basement floor).
- Open all taps and let them drain. Flush the toilet to
drain the tank.
If you get your water from a well, drain pumps and expansion
you have to leave for a long period and freezing is certain,
toxic antifreeze (cottage or recreational vehicle antifreeze,
washer) in all traps (toilets, sinks, washing machines,
Unhook washing machine hoses and drain. Leave all taps
you are gone.
- If the temperature inside your house will remain below
freezing point for
a long time, drain the hot water tank and turn off the power.
hot water tanks, turn off the power at the breaker. For
water tanks, turn the gas valve to "OFF".
- If the weather is not too cold, or if you are checking
regularly, the hot water tank may survive without draining.
In this case,
turn off the power to the hot water tank at the breaker
or fuse box,
or turn the gas valve to "PILOT".
- If your house is equipped with a sump pump to protect
it from ground
water, it will not work without electric power. Move valuables
off the basement
floor in case there is flooding. CMHC's booklet "Cleaning
Up Your House
After A Flood" contains useful information. You can obtain
it from your local CMHC office or by calling 1 800 668-2642.
Electricity and power
- Shut off power to house at breaker box.
- Shut power off at the breaker to the water heater, furnace,
(if you have one) and sump pump.
- Make sure that stoves, ovens, washing machines, and portable
are turned off at the switch.
- Close gas valves, if you have natural gas or propane.
- Unplug major appliances so that they do not start up cold
prolonged departures, pile snow, straw, or other insulating
material around the basement walls to prevent soil
freezing next to
the foundation. Close the door to the basement to
keep heat in.
Empty refrigerators and freezers. If possible, do
not keep surplus food. Wedge freezer and refrigerator
doors open to prevent mold growth. Ensure that the
devices used to hold the doors open cannot trap a
municipal authorities - police, fire, hydro - that
you are leaving the house.
Do not turn on the house water until indoor air returns
to near normal temperature-in the 20 degree C range.
Close all open taps, close hot water tank drain, reconnect
machine hoses and drain.
Turn on water at water service entrance.
Ensure that hot water taps are running and that the
hot water tank is full before turning it on. Electric
hot water tanks can be turned on at the breaker. If
you are unfamiliar with the operation of your gas
hot water tank, call a service person to restore gas
to the tank.
Turn on the tap which is on the highest level in the
house until water is flowing, to bleed air out of
the system. Ensure that drains are not clogged with
ice or cracked by freezing. Run other taps until water
is flowing. Check for leakage from pipes where possible.
If you find leaks, turn off the water supply to the
leaky pipe or turn off water at the service entrance
until leaks are repaired.
sump and sump pipes for freezing before starting the
Do not start
major appliances until the house has returned to near
stoves, ovens, washing machines, and portable space
heaters are turned off at the switch.
Turn on power
to the house breaker box.
on to individual appliances (including refrigerators
and freezers) when they are warmed up.
Safety in an Emergency
is provided to help people use wood safely as an emergency
As most home
heating systems need electricity to work, loss of power
to a house can create a heating emergency. Many householders
use their wood burning stoves and fireplaces to heat their
homes during such an emergency.
A properly installed and operated wood stove or heating
fireplace can be a safe and secure way to heat a home.
But the use of wet wood, the use of make-shift, temporary
wood stove installations, and the continuous use of decorative
fireplaces increase the risk of a house fire. If it is
possible, get professional help from a qualified chimney
installer, a chimney sweep, or ask your local fire department
the Best Out of Wet Wood
You may be forced to use wet wood, which is hard to light,
slow to burn, and
provides much less heat than dry wood.
Here's how to make the best of an emergency situation.
small pieces heat up and ignite faster than large pieces,
split the wood
into pieces about 75 mm (3") in diameter;
and ice off the wood and bring it into the house --
and be sure not to store it too close to the stove;
bright fires, using no more than five small sticks at
if you have
some dry wood, mix it with the wet wood;
up the stove or fireplace and let it smoulder
Tips for Safe Operation
if you have
a battery-operated smoke detector, make sure that it
works. If you don't have one, try to install one;
around the stove or fireplace and all exposed parts
of the chimney, including in the attic, for signs of
overheating. Wood starts to darken as it overheats;
all flue pipe joints are fastened with no fewer than
three sheet metal screws;
small, bright fires to make the most effective use
of the fuel,while avoiding the overheating that results
from burning large, intense fires;
try to heat the whole house; concentrate all your
activities in the room where the heater is and let
the rest go cold; drain down your water pipes and
ashes into a metal container, take it outside immediately
and empty it in the yard away from trees and shrubs;
never put a bucket full of ashes in the basement or
on a wooden porch floor, and never put ashes in a
wood or cardboard box;
the stove continues to smoke, open a nearby window;
you can't keep the unit from smoking, stop using it
because you and your family could suffer carbon monoxide
you are using a wood burning furnace, remove the blower
compartment door and open the basement door; burn
small, controlled fires.
Temporary Wood Stove Installations can be Hazardous
far the most dangerous wood stove installations are
those done in a make-shift
way by untrained people. While installing a wood stove
may seem a simple
matter, a safe installation calls for a lot of specialized
wood stove must have a proper brick or metal chimney
-- never try to vent a wood stove out a window using
single-wall flue pipes. Make sure the inside of the
chimney flue is clear and smooth.
The flue pipes that connect the stove to the chimney
are often the weak link. Every joint in the flue pipe
assembly MUST be fastened with three sheet metal screws
to prevent it from falling down as it heats. Flue
pipes need at least 450 mm (18") of clearance from
combustible materials like wood furniture and drywall.
The stove should be located a least 25cm (48") from
combustible materials. Most important, get professional
in Quebec, contract with a licensed installer
or accredited chimney sweep; Association des Professionnels
Chauffage (APC) is the licensing and accreditation
agency; the full list of licensed installers and
sweeps can be found in the APC magazine Plein
Feu, which is on news- stands in Quebec now;
other provinces, contract with a Wood Energy Technical
Training (WETT) certified installer or chimney
or have your local fire department check your
in the Yellow Pages for hearth dealers and chimney
sweeps nearest you,
or call the numbers at the end of this message
to get more information. If
you cannot get professional help, don't take any
chances. It would be better
to have to leave your home than to risk the safety
of your family and others
staying with you.
Be Careful with Decorative Fireplaces
The fireplaces in most homes are designed for
fire viewing, not for serious heating. The continuous
use of such fireplaces can be dangerous, particularly
if large fires are burned. Since decorative fireplaces
do not capture much of the fire's heat, it is
usually better to leave the glass doors open to
gain the direct radiant heat from the fire. The
tempered glass in many of these fireplaces block
this direct radiation.
To help avoid smoke spillage, bum one sheet of
newspaper first to preheat the chimney. Build
small, brightly flaming fires to gain the most
direct radiation, without overheating the fireplace
structure. To reduce the amount of warm air drawn
out of the house into the fireplace, close the
throat damper until the unit begins to spill smoke,
then open it until the smoke stops. Never
leave the unit unattended.
Put your Well Being First
Use your stove or fireplace safely. Don't risk your
family's safety trying to save your water pipes.
Move to a warm shelter until you can provide adequate
A Guide to Residential Wood Heating (NHA 5178) Wood
For further information: Canada
Mortgage and Housing Corporation Information
- (613) 748-2367 or 1- 800-668-2642 (option 2);
The Hearth Products Association
of Canada - (416) 626- 6568;
Association des Professionnels
Chauffage - (514) 270-4944;
Wood Energy Technical Training - 1-888-358-9388
and Stroke Foundation warns fat is the new tobacco
TORONTO, Feb. 10 /CNW/ - According to the Heart and Stroke
Foundation's Annual Report Card on Canadians' Health,
the increasing number of overweight and obese Canadians
now poses one of the greatest threats ever to public health
in this country.
"The prevalence of this serious health risk is almost
exactly what we faced with tobacco use 30 years ago -
when half of Canadians smoked," says Dr. Anthony Graham,
Heart and Stroke Foundation spokesperson and cardiologist.
Since that time, smoking rates have dropped by half -
but during those same three decades, we've been losing
ground in the area of overweight and obesity.
Heart and Stroke Foundation Report Card on Canadians'
Health Overweight and Smoking
among Canadian adults:
(BMI greater than or equal to 25; Aged 20-64)
greater than or equal to 30; Aged 20-64)
Obesity (defined as a Body Mass Index or BMI greater
than or equal to 30) can increase a person's risk
of developing heart disease or stroke by 50%.
"We continue to face the impact that tobacco use
has on our society," says Dr. Graham. "At the same
time, we are confronted by the reality that almost
half (47%) of Canadians are overweight or obese."
In fact, according to the Heart and Stroke Foundation,
almost two-thirds (12.1 million) of Canadian adults
(age 20-64) are overweight and/or smoke.
Recent US-based studies indicate that those who
are obese can lose more than 10 years of life compared
to their normal-weight peers. Obesity and smoking
is a double-barreled threat that can cost even more
years of life.
Heart and Stroke Foundation research has shown that
the number of deaths in Canada attributable to overweight
and obesity has almost doubled over the past fifteen
years, increasing from 2,514 in 1985 to 4,321 in
Canadians Weigh In
The big question on everyone's minds is: Could public
policies be implemented, similar to those being
used to curb tobacco consumption, to address excess
do Canadians believe is responsible?
Government leadership needed
industry leadership needed
When the Heart
and Stroke Foundation asked Canadians who is responsible
for finding answers to this issue, one in six (18%) suggested
that some level of government should take the lead. Interestingly,
2% of Canadians felt the food industry should show leadership.
Yet a panel of Canadian experts in the area of overweight
and obesity, convened by the Foundation, says that without
leadership from the food industry combined with government
policy, the number of overweight Canadians will increase.
Earlier polls suggest that the public strongly supports
this combined effort.
Overweight and obese Canadians are
at greater risk of developing chronic diseases (heart
disease, stroke, cancer, and diabetes) that can lead to
"We live in an environment that promotes
obesity, and individuals alone can't solve this problem,"
says Dr. Peter Katzmarzyk, epidemiologist and Heart and
Stroke Foundation spokesperson. "The way our society is
structured makes it difficult for many people to integrate
healthy eating and daily physical activity into their
lives. For example, in many cases urban development has
reduced opportunities to integrate physical activity into
daily life, such as walking to the store or informal sports."
The Heart and Stroke Foundation points
out that only 43% of Canadians are physically active.
Plus, the convenience of calorie-dense foods - as opposed
to healthier choices such as vegetables and fruit - in
quick service restaurants, convenience stores and even
gas stations, makes it even harder for Canadians to make
"Our obsession with speed and quick
solutions is one of the reasons weight is such a problem
throughout North America," says Heart and Stroke Foundation
spokesperson and dietitian, Rosie Schwartz. "We want fast
foods and fast solutions. But the truth is that we have
to get back to basics. And for the sake of the next generation,
we have to instill these habits in our children."
Tipping the scales the other way
To help Canadians win the battle of the bulge, the Heart
and Stroke Foundation is working with national health
organizations to encourage all levels of government to
commit greater resources to public health and to preventing
Through the HealthCheck(TM) program
( www.healthcheck.org ),
the Foundation is working with the food industry to help
consumers identify healthy food choices. Over 70 manufacturers
offer almost 400 products displaying the HealthCheck(TM)
symbol. These products have been reviewed by the Heart
and Stroke Foundation and they meet established nutrient
criteria based on Canada's Food Guide to Healthy Eating.
The Foundation also supports obesity-related
research, and we are targeting strategic funds to this
critical health issue. The Foundation is providing $1
million in initial funding to two multidisciplinary teams
- 21 expert researchers - to examine the biological, social,
behavioural and environmental aspects of obesity. Additional
awards to individual researchers will be finalized by
March 2004, furthering Canadian research capacity and
expertise in obesity.
The Heart and Stroke Foundation also
offers a number of health information resources including:
an easy BMI test to see if you fall into the overweight
danger zone, www.heartandstroke.ca/yourhealthtools
. Canadians can also easily order the Healthy Habits,
Healthy Weight booklet and take the Heart & Stroke
Risk Assessment Test, available via www.heartandstroke.ca
or the toll-free number 1-888-HSF-INFO (1-888-473-4636).
The Heart and Stroke Foundation's Call to Action
To the Food Industry:
our food supply by reducing saturated and trans fat in foods. Work
with the government to achieve this.
Restrict the distribution and advertising of 'junk foods'
(energy dense, nutrient-poor foods) to children. Remove
them from elementary and high school vending machines and
cafeterias. Pulling pop out of schools may seem like a good
beginning but is not if the vending machines still contain
sugar-laden fruit drinks.
portion size and pricing are in alignment. Healthy choices
should be available in restaurants. Supersize the salad,
instead of charging more to replace the fries that already
go with the meal.
nutritional labeling and information in quick serve restaurants.
Statistics show that on any given day, 30% of kids iving
in North America visit a fast food restaurant. Their parents
should have access to nutrition information on the overhead
and table menus to help make informed choices at the point
three levels of government - municipal, provincial and
federal - must support strategies to encourage healthy
living, such as: urban planning that supports recreational
activity; quality daily physical education in all our
schools; and most importantly, a public health system
that has the resources to address overweight and obesity
and the prevention of chronic diseases.