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Abstract

BACKGROUND: The Exercise Is Medicine (EIM) global health initiative aims to increase the amount of physical activity (PA) people are engaging in, with the intent of helping them meet the U.S. National PA guidelines. INTRODUCTION: The need for an increase in daily PA is becoming more evident with the steady increase in overweight and obesity rates impacting our quality of non-diseased life years. Research supports the numerous physical and mental benefits associated with exercise. The historical use of exercise as medicine dates back to over two millennia ago in which it was prescribed to help cure a variety of ailments. A majority of current leading causes of death are preventable health related diseases that can be avoided if healthier lifestyle behaviors are adopted (i.e. daily exercise and nutrient dense diets). In 2014, EIM started encouraging college campuses to promote physical activity since college years serve as a critical point in which our lifestyle choices become our own. METHODS: In Fall 2017, Southwestern University registered as a part of this initiative through the development of a leadership team that upholds the ideals of the EIM mission. The activities and events that were held on campus during the fall term were assessed to ensure that students have an abundant amount of opportunities to engage in healthy active lifestyles. DISCUSSION: Southwestern has the potential to receive bronze level recognition for its efforts. Our campus offers a variety of resources to enhance the overall well being of its students, faculty, and staff. Continued promotion of these activities will enhance and increase the awareness making a more powerful impact on the campus community.

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