Health and Wellness Fair promotes more comprehensive programs for UVU

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Ethan Kartchner speaks with a visitor about body image, and encourages him to read through the captions to learn the stories of the people in the photos. Photo by Lincoln Op’t Hof

The tables at the 2017 Health and Wellness Fair in the Science Building atrium were not limited to exercise, diet and medical care, but also addressed a variety of mental and emotional well-being topics and techniques.

Subjects oriented toward mental and emotional well-being included habit/addiction, body image and intuitive eating.

Jessica Burns, community and public health education senior was at the habit and addiction booth informing visitors about the “habit loop”, which is a three-part cycle including a cue, routine and reward, and outlines the process by which people engage in addictive behaviors.

Burns spoke about how difficult addictive behaviors are to escape, and she gave examples of how identifying parts of the cycle and then making changes to them can help a person to break their bad habits or addictive behaviors.

Ethan Kartchner, a community and public health education senior, was at the body image booth that included several photos of individuals with captions describing their experiences and difficulty with body image.

Kartchner gave a brief introduction of the gallery, describing that all the people are different and beautiful in a variety of ways, and he encouraged visitors to read through the captions to better understand the variety and difficulty in body image experiences.

The booth for intuitive eating focused on “rejecting the diet mentality.” Dieting that excludes certain types of foods such as those that are carb heavy usually ends with the person binging on the things they were avoiding, according to Suzanna Wootton, a community and public health education senior.

“It is not a diet,” Wootton said. “It is a lifestyle.”

Wootton described how intuitive eating involves eating in moderation. People need to learn to eat a well-rounded diet and stop eating once they are no longer hungry.

Addressing mental and emotional health topics in addition to physical health has become a more common conversation at the local and national levels.