April: Minority Health Month

April 2019 is National Minority Health Month, and for the observance this year, the Department of health and Human Services (HHS) Office of Minority Health (OMH) is raising awareness about the important role an active lifestyle plays in keeping us healthy.

The Theme: Active & Healthy

The Mission: To emphasize the health benefits of incorporating even small amounts of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity into our schedules.

The Sad Facts:

Heart Disease:

  • African Americans are 30% more likely to die from heart disease
  • African American women are 60% more likely to have high blood pressure.


  • African American adults are 80% more likely to have been diagnosed with diabetes
  • Non-Hispanic blacks are 4.2x more likely to be diagnosed with end stage renal disease
  • Non-Hispanic blacks are 3.5x more likely to be hospitalized for lower limb amputations
  • African Americans are 2x as likely to die from diabetes.


  • African American women have the highest rates of being overweight or obese compared to other groups in the U.S.
  • About 4 out of 5 African American women are overweight or obese.
  • African American women are 60% more likely to be obese
  • African American girls are 50% more likely to be overweight


  • African American men are 2x as likely to have a stroke
  • Black men are 60% more likely to die from a stroke

The Good News:

  • Simple lifestyle modifications like dieting and exercise can help to greatly reduces your risk of being diagnosed with any of these chronic diseases.
  • Adding exercise to your daily routine can help you to better manage your chronic diseases.
  • Physical activity promotes health and reduces the risk of chronic diseases and other conditions that are more common or severe among racial and ethnic minority groups

What You Can Do:

Try These Simple Strategies to Add Exercise to Your Daily Routine:

  • Go for a walk
  • Take the stairs
  • Go to the gym on your lunch break
  • Get up and move every 90 minutes
  • Participate in social fitness activities
  • Dance
  • Play with your kids
  • Schedule more adventurous weekend activities like bike rides, park dates or easy day-hikes

Healthy bodies are beautiful bodies. Please take the time to be aware of the different issues that may affect you and make a conscious effort to prevent them. For more information please visit The Office of Minority Health’s website: https://www.minorityhealth.hhs.gov/