Health & Wellness

older americans month graphic

Celebrate Older Americans Month

Established in 1963, Older Americans Month (OAM) is celebrated every May. Led by the Administration for Community Living (ACL), OAM is a time for us to acknowledge the contributions and achievements of older Americans, highlight important trends, and strengthen our commitment to honoring our older citizens.

This year’s theme, Aging Unbound, offers an opportunity to explore a wide range of aging experiences and to promote the importance of enjoying independence and fulfillment by paving our own paths as we age.

This May, join us as we recognize the 60th anniversary of OAM and challenge the narrative on aging. Here are some ways we can all participate in Aging Unbound:

Embrace the opportunity to change. Find a new passion, go on an adventure, and push boundaries by not letting age define your limits. Invite creativity and purpose into your life by trying new activities in your community to bring in more growth, joy, and energy.

Explore the rewards of growing older. With age comes knowledge, which provides insight and confidence to understand and experience the world more deeply. Continue to grow that knowledge through reading, listening, classes, and creative activities.

Stay engaged in your community. Everyone benefits when everyone is connected and involved. Stay active by volunteering, working, mentoring, participating in social clubs, and taking part in activities at your local senior center or elsewhere in the community.

Form relationships. As an essential ingredient of well-being, relationships can enhance your quality of life by introducing new ideas and unique perspectives. Invest time with people to discover deeper connections with family, friends, and community members.

This year, Agency on Aging \ Area 4 is excited to celebrate OAM with our partners in the aging community. Follow along throughout the month on our Facebook page to find resources on aging in place, staying connected with your communities, health promotion and physical activity and nutrition.

Diverse communities are strong communities. Ensuring that older adults remain involved and included in our communities for as long as possible benefits everyone. Please join Agency on Aging \ Area 4 in strengthening our community.

Visit us on Facebook and learn more about our services and resources on the AAA4 Website.

For more informationvisit the official OAM website, follow ACL on Twitter and Facebook, and join the conversation using #OlderAmericansMonth.

Health & Wellness

blood pressure cuff

May is High Blood Pressure Month

It’s important to know how to properly check your blood pressure to get the most accurate results. Knowing and tracking your numbers is an important step to managing high blood pressure.

Here are a few tips on how to accurately check your blood pressure:


  • Avoid exercising, drinking caffeine, or smoking 30 minutes prior.
  • Go to the bathroom.
  • Uncover your arm for the cuff, it is best to wear short sleeves or loose sleeves you can push up with ease.
  • Sit and relax for at least 5 minutes.


  • Put your feet flat on the floor.
  • Don’t talk.
  • Rest your arm on a table so it’s supported and at the level of your heart.

High Blood pressure is a major risk factor for heart disease.  It is important to take steps to lower your high blood pressure through lifestyle changes.

Learn More

arthritis month graphic

May is Arthritis Awareness month. 

Arthritis is a general term that refers to over 150 different conditions. The accurate term for this group of conditions is musculoskeletal conditions, as they affect the muscles, bones and joints.

While there is no special diet or “miracle food” that can cure arthritis and other musculoskeletal conditions, everyone can benefit from eating a healthy, well-balanced diet to maintain general good health.

Tips for managing your diet if you have arthritis include eating a well-balanced diet to get all the vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and other nutrients you need. Also include adequate dietary calcium to reduce the risk of osteoporosis in later life.

Keep a food diary – if you think a particular food may aggravate your condition, it can help to keep a diary of your food intake and symptoms. After a month, you may have some idea about which food could be provoking symptoms. Discuss these results with your doctor or a dietitian.

If you would like to learn more about arthritis, click the link below.

Healthy Eating and Arthritis

Agency on Aging Area 4 Workshops

Agency on Aging Area 4 hosts an array of workshops for the older adult community residing in Sacramento, Nevada, Placer, Sierra, Sutter, Yolo, and Yuba Counties. Whether you’re interested in nutrition, health promotion or job readiness we have the classes for you! Our team is currently creating interest lists for each of our workshops. Click on the workshop you’re interested in below and fill out the form. A staff member will contact you when we schedule the class.

Health Promotion Workshops

Bingocize: Do you enjoy playing Bingo? Join us for the next virtual Bingocize series that combines the game of bingo with physical activity and fall prevention education!

A Matter of Balance: Do you have concerns about falling? Join us for this evidence-based falls prevention class to reduce your risk of falling and increase your activity levels.

Live Strong and Safe:  Join us for a one hour presentation that provides a comprehensive overview of fall prevention, including home safety and medication management.

Diabetes Empowerment Education Program (DEEP): Do you or someone you love have diabetes? Do you want to learn how to be in charge of your diabetes rather than letting it run your life? The DEEP series helps people with pre-diabetes, diabetes, relatives, and caregivers gain a better understanding of diabetes self-care.

CalFresh Healthy Living Workshops

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Cooking Matters: in Your Community: Are you interested about learning new, budget-friendly, delicious recipes? The recipes are healthy and packed with fruits and vegetables! Join us for the next Cooking Matters series!

Eat Smart, Live Strong: Are you interested in learning the basics of healthy eating and stretching your food dollars for healthy food options? Eat Smart, Live Strong teaches this and much more, join us for the next series!

Food Smarts: Are you familiar with basic nutrition and want to dive in deeper? Food Smarts expands on the basics of nutrition and provides participants with the tools and knowledge to adopt a healthy lifestyle. Come join us at the next Food Smarts series!

Meet Your Agency on Aging Area 4 Instructors 

Brittany Lathrop

Brittany Lathrop

Brittany is originally from Orange County, CA and moved to Sacramento to attend Sacramento State University. She graduated with two bachelor’s degrees in Gerontology and Dietetics. She was hired by AAA4 in December 2018 as the Nutrition Services Coordinator for the CalFresh Healthy Living Program. In 2022, Brittany became the Health Promotion Specialist overseeing the CalFresh Healthy Living and Health Promotion Programs.

Bobby Olwell

Bobby Olwell

Bobby is the Mature Edge Job Readiness Coordinator for the Agency on Aging Area 4 with over a decade of successful experience in training older adults in the art of marketing themselves.  Bobby’s marketing career over the span of 46 years has led her to a niche very much needed in today’s job market. Bobby specializes in being a strong believer in the power of positive thinking.  Regularly training and developing clients, she assists older adults with effective techniques. Bobby enjoys a good Netflix binge but can also be found in the kitchen creating her next gourmet delight.

Julie Tharalson, RD

Julie Tharalson

Julie Tharalson is a Registered Dietitian with almost 30 years’ experience in clinical and public health nutrition. She has been with the Agency on Aging Area 4 for 10 years. Part of her focus is health education which involves teaching people how to manage chronic diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure.  In addition to her training as a dietitian, Julie also trained as a chef at the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY. She uses her unique background to show people how to prepare simple, delicious, and inexpensive meals for themselves.

Christina Mason

Christina Mason

Christina is originally from Monterey County, CA and moved to Sacramento to attend Sacramento State University. She graduated with bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology: Exercise Science. Christina has spent the last 8 years working with older adults in the for-profit sector. She was hired by AAA4 in July 2022 as a Health Promotion Instructor for the CalFresh Healthy Living Program.

Janet Johnson-Yosgott, MPH

Janet Johnson-Yosgott

Janet is originally from El Segundo, CA and relocated to Sacramento to raise her family.  She graduated from California State University Northridge with her master’s degree in public health. Janet has extensive experience in health promotion and wellness in hospital, non-profit and health plan settings. She was hired by AAA4 in July 2022 as a Health Promotion Instructor for the Fall Prevention initiatives as well as health promotion programs.

GetSetUp Free Online Classes

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GetSetUp classes are taught by older adults, for older adults. They’re retired educators or experienced presenters. The classes are both informative and fun!

All classes are free and sponsored by Agency on Aging \ Area 4. Use the coupon code: “area4-ca” to waive any fees associated with the classes.

GetSetUp Class Updates, click on links below to register for class!

Walking for Health
Wednesday, May 10th at 9:00AM

Heart-Healthy Cooking Made Easy
Monday, May 15th at 6:00PM

Tai-Chi Balance
Tuesday, May 16th at 1:00PM

Pump it Up with Light Weights 
Wednesday, May 17th at 9:00AM

Mindful Chair Yoga
Tuesday, May 23rd at 12:00PM

Nutrition Facts & Fallacies 
Wednesday, May 24th at 10:00AM

Classes are also available in Spanish and Mandarin.

More information

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Partially Funded by USDA Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, an equal opportunity provider and employer.