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The Florida Department of Health works to protect, promote & improve the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county, & community efforts.

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Apply Now for Healthy Community Champion Recognition

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 Tallahassee, Fla. — The Florida Department of Health is accepting submissions for the 2018 Healthy Community Champion Recognition Program. Over the past four years, the department has recognized more than 142 new and returning champions for their efforts to increase physical activity and improve nutrition as part of the Healthiest Weight Florida Initiative. Last year alone, 98 cities and counties were recognized. The application window will be open through April 30, 2018.

February marks the beginning of American Heart Month and it is a great time to commit to a healthy lifestyle and make small changes that can lead to a lifetime of heart health and help fight heart disease, which is the leading cause of death in Florida and the nation.

Each year, heart disease causes one in four deaths in the United States. There were 42,835 heart attack hospitalizations in Florida in 2014 or an average of 117 heart attack hospitalizations each day. About half of all Americans have at least one of the three risk factors for heart disease which include high blood pressure, high cholesterol and smoking.

Many of the risk factors for heart disease can be eliminated with diet, exercise and taking steps to quit smoking.

During American Heart Month, follow these simple tips to keep your heart healthy and fight heart disease.

•Add exercise to your daily routine, even if its just taking regular walks with family and friends; •Schedule a visit with your doctor to talk about your heart health; •Increase healthy eating by cooking heart healthy meals; and •Take steps to quit smoking by utilizing the Tobacco Free Florida's Quit Your Way Program.

Visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for more information.

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