What is the Healthy Living Initiative?

Diverse multi-generations group of people from 0 to 95 years old.Eating, physical activity, and stress reduction (collectively referred to as “Healthy Living”) impacts health during all stages of life. Living healthy contributes to physical and mental/emotional health and well-being, which helps to prevent chronic illnesses such as heart disease that negatively impact health.

Our ability to be healthy is impacted both by our individual behaviors and the environment around us. Using a comprehensive approach, the goals of the Healthy Start Healthy Living Initiative are to increase awareness of environmental influences of healthy living behaviors, and to provide specific ideas for Healthy Start programs to support Healthy Living. The initiative encourages efforts at multiple levels: individual (including both staff and participants), the Healthy Start program, and community-wide efforts. Taking this comprehensive approach helps to ensure that everyone is fully supported to live healthy lives.

Foundational Webinar Series on Healthy Living

Healthy Living Initiative: Taking a Landscape View to Healthy Living: This webinar explored how healthy living influences health outcomes, how our surroundings influence our ability to live healthy, and what types of changes Healthy Start programs can make to support living healthy. (Presented live 6/22/17)

Supporting Healthy Eating: Strategies for Healthy Start Programs: This webinar provides specific ideas for how Healthy Start programs support healthy eating. (Presented live 10/17/17)

Supporting Physical Activity: Strategies for Healthy Start Programs: This webinar provides specific ideas for how Healthy Start programs support physical activity. (Presented Live 11/7/17)

Managing Stress: Strategies for Healthy Start Programs: This webinar provides specific ideas for how Healthy Start programs support stress reduction. (Presented live 12/5/17)


There are lots of ways that Healthy Start programs can support healthy living at the individual, program, and community levels. Here are some general resources for Healthy Start programs.

Working with participants?

  • Show Your Love is a participant-friendly webpage with resources about health and wellness developed by the Preconception Health+Health Care Initiative. (University of North Carolina Chapel Hill)

Looking for ideas for your program?

  • Healthy Start programs can use the CDC Worksite Health Scorecard to identify ideas for improving the program’s physical space to better support healthy living for staff and participants. (See Pages 19-23, and 25)

Want to tap into community efforts?

  • Staff can use this Asset Mapping Tool to identify community resources and initiatives that promote healthy eating, physical activity, and reduced stress.

Find ideas and supportive resources related to these topics on the sub-pages:

For More Information

Visit the Evidence-based Practices Inventory for additional resources and practices.

The EPIC Center would like to acknowledge the contribution of Denver Healthy Start and Missouri Bootheel Regional Consortium, Inc. who have provided guidance for the Healthy Start Healthy Living Initiative.