Did you know that a weight loss program for the workplace can benefit everyone, even people that don’t lose weight? It can help improve the quality of life for all employees and even lower your health care costs. A study in the official publication of the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, in November, found it did both. The results of the study showed that not only were the participants healthier, an average of $838 was saved for those on a family program and $876 was saved on employee only employees, compared to a group that didn’t participate.
When employees lose, you win.
That sounds ominous at first, but it’s not. In fact, it’s actually quite encouraging. Obesity is the leading cause of preventable deaths and linked to many chronic illnesses. Two-thirds of Americans are overweight. Not only does being overweight or obese increase the potential for illness, it also leads to higher insurance rates, more absenteeism, lower productivity and more stress. Individuals who are overweight often suffer from low self-esteem, which can affect their job. It’s estimated that obesity costs companies around $13 billion dollars a year. It affects all areas from workman’s comp to safety on the job.
Many people in the workforce are second or even third generation fast food consumers.
Several generations ago, before the age of fast food, most people learned healthy eating at home. Food often came from the garden and normally prepared from scratch. There were limited fast foods from which to choose. TV dinners were introduced in 1954 around the same time cheap fast foods, like McDonald’s arrived on the scene. Sweets and treats weren’t purchased as often and never as a meal. That all changed and now the workforce we see are the product of homes where fast foods, frozen foods, highly processed food, food with added sugar and processed meats are their entire diet. Many people never learned how to eat healthy. They need a source of healthy information to fill in the gap left when growing up.
Find ways to improve your results.
Encouraging more exercise also beefs up the program. People are often more sedentary, especially when they have an office job. Creating an opportunity for employees to get more exercise also aids in weight loss and good health. Even people who aren’t overweight can benefit from that part of the program. While eating healthy provides huge benefits for all, exercise supplements those benefits and increase both physical and cognitive improvement. Having group exercise sessions available during lunch break, before or after work will show your commitment to your people and their good health.
- Make working out and weight loss fun. You can set up competitions like the Big Loser or even create ones that demonstrate improved endurance, strength and flexibility.
- There’s a number of ways to institute a weight loss program. You can use online guidance, seek the help of a personal trainer or provide discounted or free visits to a nutritionist.
- If you’re adding exercise to your fitness program, you can often secure the services of a personal trainer at a low cost per capita.
- Not only will a fitness and weight loss program protect your employees against chronic diseases, it can help protect them from colds and influenza and their complications.
For more information, contact us today at TravelTrim