On Your Mark...Get Set...Start Walking For Better Health Los Angeles!

Coca-Cola and Dr. Ian Smith Introduce The Makeover Mile to Help L.A. Residents Take First Steps Toward Improving Health, Overcoming Obesity

Mar 24, 2011, 12:00 ET from The Coca-Cola Company

LOS ANGELES, March 24, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Lace up your sneakers, add some spring to your step and join Coca-Cola and TV's popular medical and diet expert Dr. Ian Smith on The Makeover Mile! This new initiative from Dr. Ian brings a one-mile walk and health fair to Los Angeles to educate residents on living a more active, healthy lifestyle. The walks were created as an extension of Dr. Ian's popular 50 Million Pound Challenge program and are being made possible, in part, by Coca-Cola's Live Positively™ initiative.  

"For decades, Coca-Cola has strived to make a positive difference in people's lives and the communities where they live, work and play," said Julio Matal, Los Angeles District Sales Manager, Coca-Cola Refreshments.  "We are excited to partner with Dr. Ian to help Los Angeles take those first steps on an important path to better health and well-being."

Throughout this spring, Dr. Ian and The Makeover Mile will visit seven communities, including Los Angeles, Dallas, Houston, Washington, D.C., Atlanta, Philadelphia and Chicago. The walk in Los Angeles will kick-off at the Weingart East LA YMCA and is expected to draw a crowd of families and friends from all neighborhoods.  

"Obesity and its related medical consequences are complicated issues. There is no single solution or problem solver, rather it's going to require various and numerous soldiers to win this difficult fight," said Dr. Ian Smith, creator and founder of The Makeover Mile and 50 Million Pound Challenge.  "It's my aim to gather many different stakeholders across the country to provide education and resources directly to the people who need it the most, especially in communities that have a high rate of obesity and diminished access to quality healthcare."

Following the walk, participants and the public are invited to join a health fair that will provide free health screenings, fitness demonstrations and a healthy cooking demonstration led by local registered dietitian LeeAnn Weintraub of Nutrition Counseling & Consulting. Other physicians and health providers dedicated to helping people understand how to make simple changes to improve their quality of life will also attend. To learn more about this event and other Makeover Mile events, visit www.makeovermile.com.

Live Positively is the platform for The Coca-Cola Company's approach to sustainability. For the past 125 years, Coca-Cola has been committed to making a positive difference in the communities we serve by supporting meaningful programs and organizations. Sponsorship of The Makeover Mile is just one of many things our company is doing to help Californians lead more active, healthy lifestyles.  We have awarded Live Positively Fitness Centers to eight schools statewide whose students, parents and teachers recorded the most "active days" in the California Governor's Fitness Challenge. Through our Active Healthy Living Grant program, we have awarded $100,000 to non-profit organizations across the state to support family-oriented physical activity and nutrition education programs. We also sponsored the Triple Play Fit Family Challenge event at the Venice Boys and Girls Club, part of the larger Triple Play program that Coca-Cola sponsors at Boys and Girls Clubs nationwide that has helped more than one million kids get more physically active.  

About The Coca-Cola Company

The Coca-Cola Company is the world's largest beverage company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still brands. Led by Coca-Cola, the world's most valuable brand, the Company's portfolio features 14 billion dollar brands including Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply and Georgia. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling beverages, juices and juice drinks and ready-to-drink teas and coffees. Through the world's largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than 200 countries enjoy the Company's beverages at a rate of 1.7 billion servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our environmental footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe, inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic development of the communities where we operate. For more information about our Company, please visit our website at www.thecoca-colacompany.com.

SOURCE The Coca-Cola Company