Greensboro's African American Community Newspaper since 1967

The best Mother’s Day present is good health


Peacemaker Editor Afrique Kilimanjaro takes her mother and hero, Peacemaker Associate Publisher and Comptroller C. Vickie Kilimanjaro, muscadine grape picking as part of their healthy food eating efforts and active lifestyle.

Mother’s Day is such a wonderful holiday. It’s a time to remind you to honor the person who helped make you the person that you are. The person who dried away your tears and told you it would be okay. That person may have borne you through her body or through her heart. Being a mother is not about the biological, it is about the heart.

So, how do you honor that incredibly special person in your life? How do you make sure that there are many more holidays to celebrate? Be healthful to that person.

There are a few basic health principals that you can practice. Encourage your mother to eat better. You are what goes into your body. The body is indeed a wondrous apparatus, but it works with what it is given. Ensure that quality food is ingested by your mother. Relegate junk food to the infrequent special occasion part of her life. She deserves a better quality in the food she eats. If she is taking supplements, make sure that her healthcare provider is aware of them. The supplements have an affect or why else would she be taking them. Make sure they do not interact with any medications she may be taking.

Find a way to build exercise into her life if she has not gotten onto that band wagon. A brisk walk would be great. Most people have the internet. YouTube has a wealth of exercise programs that can be accessed at any time for convenience. There are also all types of different levels of fitness available. If Mom is new to exercise, look for chair exercises that you can do together no matter where you are. Try to ensure she exercises to ensure she is here longer.

Take the time to inspect her home for everything from fall hazards to mold. Falls are a primary way bones are broken. Broken bones can take away the independence of your mother. Inspect the house and reposition or remove rugs, mats or other things that can cause falls. Look for mold and other pollutants that would affect the air she breathes and thus her health. Remediate any and all mold, it is toxic and will affect her health.

Loneliness is a big problem for people of all ages. Make sure your mother is not one of them suffering from loneliness. The convenience of the phone makes it easy to contact and engage in a brief conversation. That may not be enough to really know what is going on with your mother and to make sure she is not lonely. As we regain a normalcy in our life and as we learn to live with COVID-19, build quality time into your relationship with your mother. Brief interactions will not allow you the ability to know what is really going on and to make sure she is not lonely.

Loneliness kills and decreases the joy of life.

Make sure your mother is getting adequate sleep. Sleep is when your body repairs itself. Many people as they get older have difficulty sleeping. Some of it is sleep hygiene. Make sure the bedroom is cool and dark. Try discouraging naps longer than 15 minutes during the day. Do not drink caffeinated beverages after midday.

If your mother is on medication, make sure she has them daily. Missed medications can exacerbate controlled medical problems into large deadly medical problems.

Remember, your mother was the one who took care of you, return the favor and be healthful to her.

One of the last questions I ask many guests on our radio and podcast is, “Who is your hero?” Most people will include their mother in their answer to this question. Happy Mother’s Day to all.

Dr. Veita Bland is a board-certified Greensboro physician and hypertension specialist. Dr. Bland’s radio show, “It’s a Matter of Your Health,” can be heard live on Wednesdays, 5:30 p.m. on N.C. A&T State University’s WNAA, 90.1 FM. Listeners may call in and ask questions. The show is replayed on Sirius 142 at 5 p.m. on Wed. Email Dr. Bland at