By Steve Kabelowsky Contributing Columnist Published Mar 05, 2013 at 3:11 PM

There’s a significant difference between a proactive or a reactive approach when it comes to health. However, when one has a need to find out about a medical issue in either case, information is power.

That’s why Eric Von and Faithe Colas have brought together different areas of health information to one spot online at

"There are a number of health issues that affect the African-American community," Colas said, highlighting issues like hypertension (blood pressure), diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer and others that will be addressed on the site.

"What we found that the information was available out there, but there wasn’t a one-stop place where it was kept," Von said.

Von and Colas stated that dealing with health issues of their own, or helping with family members and friends, that through that experience they wished there was a place online that could serve the community with information.

"This was a natural fit," Von said. "We’ve been always involved in communications. And this was important and we wanted to deal with something that really matters."

Articles will be updated on the site on a regular basis, and blog writers will be able to interact with readers on a number of health and lifestyle topics. Colas and Von mentioned the connections that the site makes with all aspects of life, like how finances and wealth management can directly affect one’s health for example. 

"Lifestyle, leisure and nutrition … (these topics) impact every one of us," Von said.

Another aspect of health the site addresses is having a knowledge base on when to seek out a doctor and know what questions to ask.

"For instance, we wanted to help the readers understand how to build that relationship, that we are not always trusting of doctors," Von said.

Colas said that sometimes that relationship can go the other way, that as patients we may not question the medications that are picked up at the pharmacy, and how it is important to get clear directions from the doctor and to double check.

Early partners of the site, that launched a little more than a week ago, include the City of Milwaukee Public Health Department, the American Cancer Society and Wheaton Franciscan Healthcare.

"Brain Brawn & Body was born out of necessity. If knowledge is power, and it certainly is, then Black men need to know as much as they can about living healthy lives; not just for themselves, but for the ones they love," stated the overview of the site.

Marketing plans include social media efforts with Facebook and other platforms, as well as networking connections through active fraternities and sororities and alumni groups from the Midwest and across the nation. Email newsletters  and print editions are in the plans as the site builds content and readers through the year.

"We are proud of what Brain Brawn & Body represents and believe we can reach African-American males with health related information that will improve their health and thus, the overall health of the community," Von and Colas shared in the site’s overview.

Steve Kabelowsky Contributing Columnist

Media is bombarding us everywhere.

Instead of sheltering his brain from the onslaught, Steve embraces the news stories, entertainment, billboards, blogs, talk shows and everything in between.

The former writer, editor and producer in TV, radio, Web and newspapers, will be talking about what media does in our community and how it shapes who we are and what we do.