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Winter blues topic of presentation at Heartland Cancer Center
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    Heartland Cancer Center (HCC) will be the new location for the next series of monthly interactive televideo (ITV) presentations organized by Midwest Cancer Alliance.
    The topic of the first 2015 event is “Shake Off Those Winter Blues.” It is scheduled for 3 to 4 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 25 at HCC, 204 Cleveland; the program is free and open to the public.
    Susan Rieger, licensed clinical social worker, will lead the discussion that will highlight Stephen Ilardi’s six-step program to keep depression at bay during the winter months.
    Dr. Ilardi is associate professor of clinical psychology at the University of Kansas.
    “Depression increases in the winter for many reasons,” Rieger said. “For example, our sunlight exposure decreases, family gatherings cause emotional stress or financial burdens, and we miss our lost loved ones during the holidays.
    “In addition, our diets are less healthy and we exercise less,” she continued. “Stephen Ilardi, who is a PhD, has a plan to help beat depression.”
    Ilardi believes lifestyle contributes to the high incidence of depression in the United States. Through his research, he suggests six steps to better mental and physical health.
    “His research will point to ways to change what is happening chemically in your brain and improve your mood,” Rieger said.
    The six areas of discussion will include omega-3 fatty acids; engaging activities; sunlight exposure; exercise; social connection; and enhanced sleep.
    “Dr. Ilardi has worked with many people who found this approach helpful in turning depression around,” Rieger noted. “We hope Great Bend-area residents will attend this informative program.”
    Midwest Cancer Alliance, the outreach arm of The University of Kansas Cancer Center, sponsors the ITV presentations in collaboration with Turning Point: The Center for Hope and Healing.