Attendees were invited to step right up and meet the Mets players from the 1969 World Series championship-winning team at Lynbrook Restorative Therapy and Nursing on Sept. 13. Former Mets outfielder Ed Kranepool and former first baseman Art Shamsky came to Lynbrook to promote proper exercise and nutrition in the fight against obesity.
Town of Hempstead Supervisor Laura Gillen and Lynbrook Deputy Mayor Hilary Becker also attended the initiative, which included free health screenings, testings and personalized healthy meal plans for senior citizens. Seniors talked to a variety of health officials, including a pulmonary support group, nursing and social services professionals and dietary experts. They provided free testing for everyone that attended.
Kranepool suffers from diabetes and is in need of a kidney transplant. He promoted a healthy lifestyle for seniors.
“I know how important it is out here for the senior people to have these facilities to be able to come, participate and take advantage of taking care of their lives,” he said, according to a news release.
Shamsky echoed his former teammates sentiments. “It’s important for everyone to understand that good health means taking care of yourself, eating well and exercising as much as you can,” he said in the release.
According to recent statistics, 25 percent of adults on Long Island are still living with obesity and more than half are considered overweight. The same trends hold true for the Town of Hempstead, America’s largest township.
“Only one in 10 adults consumes enough fruits and vegetables in their daily diet,” Gillen said per the release. “There are a number of reasons why so few of us eat correctly, but one reason may be from lack of access to fresh fruit and vegetables, especially in more socioeconomically disadvantaged parts of our town, where fast food is unfortunately more prevalent than fresh food.”
Becker praised the center for its work and thanked the Mets players for paying a visit. “Making sure that our seniors are exercising and receiving proper nutrition goes a long way in the quality of life for the clients that they are serving as they seek a full recovery,” he said, according to the release.
The Lynbrook Restorative Therapy and Nursing Center will be hosting a series of health fairs throughout the year.
“I really welcome everyone in the community that wants to come in, and meet, and get some education,” said Administrator Lisa Penzioner in the release. “Comprehensive and compassionate care starts with teaching healthy habits as early as possible. It’s never too late to start eating right and exercising.”
Gillen said the fight against obesity is still prevalent. “Obesity has become the No. 1 health problem in our country today,” she said. “More than half of all Americans are overweight and with nearly 40 percent of adults and 19 percent of children in the United States reporting to be obese. It’s a major risk factor for both type 2 diabetes, as well as heart disease, which is still the number one killer in the United States.”
—Courtesy Town of Hempstead
(Compiled by Mike Smollins).