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Better Choices, Better Health

Put Life Back in Your Life

Who We Are

Better Choices, Better Health (also known as the Chronic Disease Self-Management Program) helps adults manage the symptoms of chronic diseases, such as arthritis, heart disease, stroke, asthma, lung disease, diabetes, diabetes, osteoporosis, and other chronic conditions. This evidence-based program, developed by Stanford University, is held weekly for 2 ½ hours for six weeks at community-based locations in participating counties.

The workshop sessions are taught by trained leaders in the community; many of whom also have chronic conditions. This creates an environment of mutual support, which builds participants’ confidence in their ability to manage their health and lead active lives.

Participants Learn

  • Techniques to deal with isolation, frustration, fatigue, and pain
  • Suitable exercises for maintaining and improving strength, flexibility, and endurance
  • Appropriate use of medications
  • How to communicate effectively with family, friends, and health professionals
  • Healthy eating and nutrition tips
  • How to evaluate treatment options

Workshop Resources

Workshop participants will use a variety of resources in the Better Choices, Better Health workshop sessions, including:

  • The companion book, Living a Healthy Life with Chronic Conditions
  • An audio relaxation CD, Time for Healing
  • To learn more and hear participant comments, view the Health for a Lifetime Video.

Thank you for your interest in Better Choices, Better Health. Workshops are coordinated locally. To request more information about the program, please contact your local public health department or area agency on aging. If you are uncertain who your local program coordinator is, you can also contact the Iowa Department of Public Health by submitting an inquiry through our Contact Us system.