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A Day With the de la Cruz Family

Download A Day With the de la Cruz Family pdf document (380k, 2 pages) handout.

People react in different ways when they learn that they must make lifestyle changes to lower their chances of getting heart disease. Let’s review how the de la Cruz family acts when they get the news about their risk.

  • Ric: “I don’t really care.”
    Ric learns that he is at risk for heart disease but he is not concerned. He gets upset when reminded about changing his unhealthy habits. He has no intention of making changes for better health. “Whatever will be, will be,” claims Ric.
  • Mila: “I am stuck.”
    Mila is worried because she knows that smoking is a risk factor for heart disease, and is aware of the effect that secondhand smoking has on asthma. She thinks about making changes but cannot get started. She feels trapped and is not motivated to take steps for better health. “You can bring a horse to water but you cannot make it drink,” ponders Mila.
  • Rose: “I am making plans.”
    Rose learns that her husband is at risk for heart disease and thinks that she should make changes. Instead of putting off her efforts until tomorrow, she asks her friends and family for suggestions on how she can make heart healthy changes for her family. “Walking the walk is harder than talking the talk,” says Rose.
  • Lola (Mrs. Caridad de la Cruz): “I am taking action.”
    Lola learns that she is at risk for heart disease and quickly starts doing something about it. She goes to classes to learn how to improve her health. She practices what she learns. Lola makes simple changes and helps others to do the same. “An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure,” says Lola.
  • Jose: “I stay on the healthy path.”
    Jose is making changes and is motivated to stay on track to improve his health. He knows that it is easy to fall back into old habits. He makes plans to prevent setbacks and learns to start again if he needs to. He is positive toward life. He asks for help and does not give up. “Time is gold and health is priceless,” says Jose.

Now, please answer these questions:

  1. With which family member do you identify?
  2. What reasons do you have to make changes for better health?
  3. What are the barriers that keep you from making changes to improve your health?
  4. What can you do to overcome these barriers?

Back to Session 1

Information on this page is taken from the English print version of “Healthy Heart, Healthy Family: A Community Health Worker's Manual.” U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Heart Lung and Blood Institute, NIH Publication No. 08-3674, Originally Printed 1999, Revised May 2008.

Last Updated March 2012

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