Lifestyle Techniques to Combat Chronic Conditions

Chronic diseases affect over 117 million people in the U.S., nearly half the adults in the country. Heart disease and cancer are two chronic diseases that cause nearly 50% of all deaths each year. Meanwhile, obesity and diabetes are behind many of the painful and costly  disabilities treated annually.

There is good news amid this frightening array of statistics. Many chronic diseases can be prevented before they occur by making the right lifestyle choices. View the infographic here on   the importance of encouraging healthy lifestyle habits in the workplace.

Lifestyle Techniques to Combat Chronic Conditions

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Healthier Companies are More Profitable Companies

As more and more companies take advantage of corporate wellness programs like those offered by Wellsource, the most skeptical business executives and financial managers are scrutinizing the cost-benefit of bringing a health program to their organization, and are wondering how such a program will impact their bottom line. Research shows that health and wellness initiatives help businesses save money and become more profitable.

Let’s take a look at some of the ways that company health programs help improve the bottom line:

  • Reduced healthcare costs – According to the CDC, 75% of total healthcare costs in the U.S. are spent on treating and managing chronic diseases,[i] such as heart disease and type II diabetes. Most of these chronic diseases are what are known as lifestyle diseases, or diseases that can be avoided or mitigated by making healthy life decisions. When employees understand the status of their health and risk factors for disease, they may be more motivated to make regular exercise, good diet, and other healthy lifestyle choices a part of their daily lives. Employers who offer support and incentives tied to employee health assessments and wellness programs will find their employees motivated to change their lifestyle choices. According to the National Prevention Council, medical costs and costs associated with employee absenteeism are reduced by $2 to $3 for every $1 spent on workplace wellness programs.
  • More productive employees – When employees are healthy, the indirect costs associated with lost productivity due to absenteeism and poor performance are reduced. Corporate wellness programs enable businesses to reach new levels of productivity by helping employees adopt healthier behaviors – a change that has a positive impact on workers’ personal lives and on their employers’ bottom lines.
  • Increased employee loyalty – The best (and most cost-efficient) kind of employee is a loyal employee – one who cares about the company he or she works for, and who is committed to helping that company achieve its goals. Corporate wellness programs are a way for businesses to demonstrate their concern for their employees’ health and wellbeing. Wellness programs in the workplace that are designed based upon the needs, risks, and interests of employees can enhance employee retention and increase loyalty over the long-run.

Learn more about the benefits of corporate health assessments and wellness programs by contacting Wellsource today at 800-533-9355.



Corporate wellness news

How Stress at Work Hurts the Health of Your Employees

Life can be stressful, and that goes doubly so when you’re on the job. Talking with clients, meeting deadlines, and coordinating with uncooperative team members can all quickly lead to feeling overwhelmed and stressed, which often leads to a drop in productivity and workplace morale. Even more troubling, is the negative impact all that stress can have on an employee’s physical and mental health.

The Effects of Stress

Medical research has found a clear connection between stress and a multitude of negative health effects. Negative health effects from stress can be as small as headaches, to as big as panic attacks, depression, heart problems, and diabetes, just to name a few. In one study, employees who worked longer shifts were found to be more likely to suffer from hypertension, experience an accident on the job, make mistakes at work, and engage in unhealthy behavior like smoking.

Reducing Stress in the Workplace

While it’s impossible to have a completely stress-free workplace, there are steps that businesses can take to help relieve stress on their employees, making their lives healthier while also improving their performance. Some of these steps include:

  • Make employees feel appreciated – One of the leading causes of stress at work is the feeling among employees that they are unappreciated, or that they are being treated unfairly. Employees who feel that their workplace is a “just” one – one where their issues are heard, and where employees are dealt with fairly – are much less likely to suffer the negative health effects associated with stress.[iii] Being recognized for going above and beyond scope of responsibilities, for hitting challenging deadlines, and for achieving goals goes a long way toward making an employee and their teams feel like they and their work matter.
    Be responsive to employee needs – When stress starts to affect an employee’s health and/or work performance, managers should encourage and lead employees in stress relief activities and stepping away from their desks. Activities that help relieve workplace stress include a 15-minute walk, healthy snacks, laughter, and giving employees the time and space to stretch or meditate.

Wellsource offers comprehensive tools for company wellness programs. . Learn more today by calling 800-533-9355.


How to deal with stress at work




Why Fall Is a Great Time to Start a New Fitness Program

Fall Fitness TipsHave you been promising yourself you’ll start exercising more any day now? Planning on getting in better shape, but just can’t seem to find the time? We’ve got some good news for you: Fall is here, and it’s the perfect time to start a new fitness routine! Whether you’re making plans with your coworkers to improve worksite wellness or going it alone, here’s a list of reasons why there’s no better time to start exercising than right now.

  • The weather is mild – In most places in the world, the weather in fall is some of the mildest and most agreeable of the whole year. That means it’s the perfect time to go outside and start running, walking, or jogging before winter arrives and the cold adds one more reason to your list of reasons to put off exercising.
  • Get in shape for the holidays – The arrival of fall also means that the winter holidays are just around the corner. For most people, the time between Thanksgiving and New Year’s is a time for indulging in rich foods and taking a break from normal routines. In other words, it’s not a time of year when most people are thinking about exercise. By starting a new fitness routine in the fall, you’ll be able to shed some extra pounds ahead of the winter holidays.
  • You’ll already have your New Year’s resolution – For all the people who swear every New Year’s Eve that next year will be the year they get in shape, not many people actually follow through on their commitment. If you start getting in shape now, however, you’ll already have a head start on next year’s weight-loss goal.

For more great health tips for fall and the rest of the year, contact Wellsource today at (800) 533-9355.

5 Employee Health Tips for Fall

Fall Health TipsFall is here, which means it’s out with the heat, and in with the turning leaves and cool breezes. In honor of the passing of the seasons, we thought we’d pass along some staff wellness tips  to help keep you and your coworkers healthy and happy this fall.

  • Get a flu shot – Worried you might end up having to take time off work when you inevitably come down with the flu? There’s an easy solution to this problem – get a flu shot! Going to your doctor for an annual flu shot is the best possible way to avoid falling sick this flu season. You’ll be doing yourself and your coworkers a favor.
  • Drink lots of water – “But what about the common cold?” you might be asking. It’s true that the flu shot doesn’t protect against the cold, but there are ways that you can guard yourself against it. Drinking water boosts the immune system, helping the body fight off invading germs.
  • Have some pumpkin – As everyone who loves Halloween will tell you, fall is pumpkin season, and, since pumpkins are full of vitamins A and C, enjoying everyone’s favorite squash can also boost your immune system and help you get the right amount of nutrients into your body.
  • Enjoy the weather – If the summer heat kept you indoors for the last few months, then autumn is the perfect opportunity to make up for lost time outdoors. Take advantage of the moderate weather to get in some running or walking before the winter cold arrives.

Interested in learning more about worksite wellness? Contact Wellsource today at (800) 533-9355 for more information on our corporate health programs.


Why Keeping Your Work Area Clean Is So Important

Employee health tipsLook around your work station right now. How clean is it? Are there a couple of crumbs from your most recent snack on your desk? Is the floor a little dirtier than it should be? When was the last time you wiped down your work station with clean wipes? We may not think of cleaning up our work stations as a high priority task when we have so much else to do, but cleanliness in the workplace isn’t just about appearances; it’s an important part of maintaining overall staff wellness.

Part Work Desk, Part Dining Table

According to the American Dietetic Association, a huge number of Americans eat at their desks at some point during the day. As determined by their research:

  • 62% of American workers eat lunch at their desks
  • 50% eat one or more snacks at their desks
  • 27% eat breakfast at their desks1

While there’s nothing wrong with eating at your desk, in theory, the unfortunate fact is that many work stations are secret breeding grounds for many kinds of bacteria. In fact, past research has shown that your keyboard and mouse are likely to be home to unpleasant microbes, such as e coli and staph, and likely have more germs on them than a toilet seat!2

If the thought of eating on a surface dirtier than your toilet doesn’t sound very appetizing to you, then you understand the importance of keeping your work station clean. Even if you don’t eat at your desk, unclean work stations lead to more germs circulating around the office, increasing your likelihood of getting sick at work. In other words: Keeping your desk clean is good for your health.

Contact Wellsource today at (800) 533-9355 for more information on improving workplace health.




Why Work Breaks Are Important to Employee Health

Workplace health tipsHow seriously do you and your coworkers take their 10 minute breaks? For most people, their breaks are just a formality, a chance to waste time and run down the clock until it’s time to punch back in and go back to work. What many people don’t realize, however, is that how employees spend those 10 minutes can have a profound effect on work performance and overall worksite wellness .

Directed vs. Involuntary Attention

According to researchers, people’s attention spans can be separated into two different classifications: directed attention and involuntary attention. Directed attention is when we consciously focus on a task and choose to spend mental energy on it; involuntary attention is when our brains subconsciously become engaged by something we’ve observed.

When we’re at work, we use most of our mental capacity on paying directed attention to the tasks at hand. Unlike involuntary attention, directed attention is a finite resource that can be depleted; when that happens, mental fatigue sets in, leading to a dramatic drop in memory, energy, and an ability to get work done.

How Breaks Recharge Directed Attention

You’ve probably noticed that after relaxing for even a short period of time, your brain feels recharged immediately afterward. Activities like relaxing, going for a nature walk, or even just looking at pictures of nature all stimulate our involuntary attention, rather than using up directed attention. According to Dr. Marc Berman of the Rotman Research Institute of Toronto, stimulating indirect attention has been shown to also recharge directed attention, increasing working memory by up to 20%.[i]

With this in mind, Berman suggests that workers spend even their 10 minute breaks taking a “true” break – not browsing the internet or chatting with coworkers, but instead taking the time to relax, go for a walk, or perform other activities that stimulate indirect attention, and thus recharge directed attention as well.

For more helpful tips on improving the health of your workplace, contact Wellsource today at (800) 533-9355.

The Psychological Benefits of Corporate Wellness Programs

Wellness programs provide employees and employers with a variety of helpful resources necessary for improving the overall health and lifestyle of the company as a whole.

Companies can customize programs as needed, choosing from a variety of tools, health assessments, reports, educational materials, and more.

The importance of mental health in particular is illustrated here in the potentially negative impact it can have on many areas of performance at work. Problems often result that affect every measure of a company’s success, from high turnover to low productivity.

The benefits of focusing on wellness are immediate, and they will build over time. A supportive work environment helps in reducing symptoms and risks of depression, at the same time increasing productivity and saving company dollars. Employees gain a greater sense of well-being and experience better health outcomes in a long list of areas, as shown in this infographic. Investing in a wellness program ultimately contributes long-term benefits to the bottom line, and to the well-being of everyone involved in the total enterprise.


Corporate Wellness Infographic


For more information about this infographic, contact us today at (800) 533-9355.

Workplace Health Programs Lead to Fewer Obese Employees

worksite wellnessThere are plenty of reasons why employers should be concerned about the health of their employees. Workers who eat well, get exercise, and lead overall healthy lives are more productive, get sick less frequently, and cost their employers less in health expenses. Company wellness programs like those offered by Wellsource are designed with this in mind – by investing in the health of the people who work for them, businesses end up saving money in the long run and being more profitable. According to a recent study, the companies that invest in these programs are seeing results.

A recently completed study revealed that 17% of young “millennial” employees at workplaces that encouraged employees to follow multiple healthy lifestyle practices, were clinically obese. At companies that only promoted one kind of healthy lifestyle choice, or did not promote healthy living to employees at all, that number jumped to 24%. The study was conducted over a 10-year period, with participants answering an initial set of questions about their health choices in middle school and high school, and then answering another round of questions after they had entered the workforce.

The study also found that many employees reported eating fast food, drinking sugary drinks, and making other poor diet choices because they were conveniently available. In other words, unhealthy lifestyle choices are often the result of our environment – when unhealthy food is the most convenient option at work, many employees will choose eating poorly over spending the extra time and energy that it would take to eat something healthier.

Does your workplace need to improve its lifestyle advocacy efforts? Wellsource can help! Call us today at (800) 533-9355.




How Snacking at Work Really Affects Employee Health

snacking at workEveryone has eaten a midday snack at their work desk before, and most of us think little about how that extra food is impacting our health. It turns out it’s probably doing more damage to our bodies than we think. According to the USDA, most Americans are adding 400 calories to their daily intake just with the snacks they eat between meals. That might not seem like much on its own, but when all those extra calories are added up over a week, a month, or a year, it starts to look like a more serious problem.

So what can be done, aside from removing snack time from our daily schedules? Here are a few suggestions for how to snack a little smarter:

  • Stay hydrated – There are lots of good reasons to drink the recommended 8 cups of water a day, and one of them is that drinking water makes us feel full. If you find yourself feeling hungry between meals or eating more than one snack during the day, try drinking more water.
  • Less chips, more fruit – Many people look at their daily snack as a time to indulge in a bit of junk food like chips or candy bars. Instead of choosing something full of sugar, fat, or salt, use snack time to make sure that you’re eating your recommended daily helping of fruit and vegetables. Apples and grapes, in particular, are healthy options that are easy to eat at your desk.
  • Stay off of social media – If you’re like most Americans, you have at least one friend who loves to fill their Facebook and Twitter feeds with all the delicious recipes they want to try. If you’re finding yourself hungry between meals, it might be because your social media feed is tempting you.

Want more great worksite wellness tips? Contact Wellsource today at (800) 533-9355.