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May 1, 2023

The Ability Connection

Issue #8

May is Arthritis Awareness Month

Arthritis is a leading cause of disability in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control, almost 59 million adults (1 in 4), have arthritis that has been diagnosed by a doctor. Nearly 26 million are unable to do everyday activities because of arthritis.  Arthritis means inflammation or swelling of one or more joints. It describes more than 100 conditions that affect the joints, tissues around the joint, and other connective tissues. Specific symptoms vary depending on the type of arthritis, but usually include joint pain and stiffness.

You can decrease your risk of getting arthritis or making arthritis worse by changing the risk factors you can control. Making lifestyle changes can decrease your risk of getting some types of arthritis or making arthritis worse. We can help! Our Adaptive Lifestyle Program is designed to meet you where you are and supplement what you and your doctor are already working on. It includes recommendations for lifestyle adaptations including healthy eating and adaptive exercises to help you meet your goals and improve your overall health.

May is National High Blood Pressure Education Month

High blood pressure is quite common. According to the Centers for Disease Control, tens of millions of adults in the United States have high blood pressure, and many do not have it under control. High blood pressure increases the risk for heart disease and stroke, two leading causes of death for Americans. It is called the silent killer because high blood pressure often has no signs or symptoms. For this reason, it is important to have your blood pressure checked regularly so that any problems can be identified and treated early.

According to the American Heart Association, these are risk factors for developing high blood pressure:

  • Family history: If your parents or other close blood relatives have high blood pressure, there’s an increased chance that you’ll get it, too.
  • Age: The older you are, the more likely you are to get high blood pressure. As we age, our blood vessels gradually lose some of their elastic quality, which can contribute to increased blood pressure. However, children can also develop high blood pressure.
  • Gender: Until age 64, men are more likely to get high blood pressure than women are. At 65 and older, women are more likely to get high blood pressure.
  • Race: African Americans tend to develop high blood pressure more often than people of any other racial background in the United States. It also tends to be more severe in African Americans, and some medications are less effective in treating HBP in blacks.
  • Chronic kidney disease (CKD): HBP may occur because of kidney disease. And, having HBP may also cause further kidney damage.

If you or someone you love is concerned about high blood pressure, inquire with us about our Adaptive Lifestyle Program. Our qualified staff will make recommendations for appropriate lifestyle adaptations including healthy eating and adaptive exercises to help you improve your blood pressure and overall health.

What’s happening?

Summer Camps

We are preparing to offer weekly themed summer camps (i.e., Nature Week, Color Week, Dinosaur Week, etc.) in June and July. We will be offering both morning and afternoon camps.  If you are interested in enrolling a family member in summer camps, please contact Bio Ability at 470.560.3981 to be added to the waiting list to reserve a spot before we start enrollment. This will help us determine our camp and class scheduling and staffing needs.

Camp Counselors Needed

If you or someone you know are interested in working as a Camp Counselor (18 years or older) or Assistant Camp Counselor (14 years or older) please fill out a job application on our website or contact us directly. We are looking to partner with individuals who are passionate about working with children, teens and adults of all skills and abilities at our facility and in the community. The successful candidates will fill the role of Lead Camp Counselors/Counselors.

Exercise of the Month:  Range of Motion (ROM)

Be sure to discuss with your doctor before starting any new exercises or exercise program. Range-of-motion exercises can improve the mobility of arthritic joints. To complete the below exercises, move the joint as far as it can go and then gently try to push a little farther.


Open your hand with fingers straight. Start by bending at the middle large knuckles. Then touch your finger to your palm and open again. Repeat 10 times.

Start with your hand open. Move thumb across your hand to touch the base of your pinky finger. Open again. Repeat 10 times.


Sit in a chair with your feel resting on the floor but free enough to swing your legs. Straighten one leg out in front of you and hold it. Relax it and bring it back to the floor. Now take the foot back behind you as far as you can. Bring it back to the starting position. Repeat with both legs 10 times.


Lie on your back with your arms at your sides. Raise one arm at a time to the ceiling and then bring it back to the floor. Repeat with each arm 10 times.


From the same lying position, point toes toward the ceiling. Slide one leg out to the side and then back to the starting position. Repeat with each leg 10 times.

Range-of-motion exercises for arthritis – Harvard Health

Recipe of the Month: Artichoke, spinach and white bean dip



2 cups artichoke heart

1 tablespoon black pepper

4 cups chopped spinach

1 teaspoon minced dried thyme

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley

1 cup cooked white beans

2 tablespoons grated parmesan cheese

1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream



  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Mix all ingredients together. Put in a glass or ceramic dish and bake for 30 minutes.
  3. Serve with vegetables or whole-grain bread or crackers.

Nutrition Information

Serving size: ½ cup
Calories: 123; Total fat: 3g; Saturated fat: 1.5g; Carbohydrates: 16g; Fiber: 4g; Protein: 8g.

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