The Washington Post

Making a healthy choice in life, work

This week a cousin who was like a brother to me died from a stroke. As many of you may attest, there is nothing like the sudden death of a close family member to make you think about your own health.

The way many of us eat and treat our bodies can cause major health problems. But if you have a computer, tablet or smartphone that can connect to the Internet, you have access to many sites that can help you with your health.

Healthfinder.gov is a government Web site where you will find plenty of information and tools. It has resources on a wide range of topics selected from more than 1,600 government and nonprofit organizations.

Health.gov is run by the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health, Office of the Secretary, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Its focus is to be the starting point on health resources, from encouraging physical activity to providing dietary guidelines. The site has information on everything from cancer to diabetes to HIV and sleep apnea. There are special areas for women and older adults.

Health is a critical issue for the federal government, and is an area full of opportunity for job-hunters. Positions ranging from doctors, dentists, dietitians, you name it and you’ll find opportunity at agencies that fall under the departments of Health and Human Services and Veteran Affairs.

Here are some more sites to check out if you’re looking for health information.

MedlinePlus is a service run by the National Library of Medicine at the National Institutes of Health. As the Web site notes, it offers reliable, current health information. It’s here: www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers a wealth of health information as well as key guidance on critical situations such as the multistate fungal meningitis outbreak. More is here: www.cdc.gov.

WomensHealth.gov is run by the Office on Women’s Health in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. There’s also GirlsHealth.gov, which covers issues on relationships, bullying and more.

I am disappointed that the federal government doesn’t have a MensHealth.gov or BoysHealth.gov. (Hint, folks.) Still, there are numerous resources for men. The CDC has a men’s section and so does WomensHealth.gov. And the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has a site called Healthy Men. It’s here: www.ahrq.gov/healthymen.

I could go on and on with Web sites, but these will get you started.

Oh, one more: ChooseMyPlate.gov, to help make good eating choices.

Let’s get our lives, our loved ones and our country healthy. There may be a federal job in there along the way, too.

Dortch is president of the Diversa Group, which specializes in federal employment.

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