About Wellness Corporate Solutions

Thursday, June 13, 2013

The Link Between Occupation and Obesity

For those of us in the wellness community, it doesn't come as a surprise to learn that obesity and occupation are related. When you work with law firms and mining companies and everything in between, you learn that different populations have different health issues.

The latest Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index, a survey of more than 138,000 workers aged 18 and older, found that 36.4% of transportation workers had a BMI over 30. Manufacturing and installation/repair were next on the list, with obesity rates of 29.9% and 28.3%, respectively.

Interestingly, physicians had the lowest rate of obesity overall (not surprising) but nurses were in the middle of the pack. Same field, but a very different demographic.

Last month, I attended a luncheon at a local hotel/conference center. One of the employees told me that food is, quite literally, available at every turn. The hotel offers a free buffet breakfast and lunch, making it almost impossible not to overeat. They have a wellness program, but the physical environment works against it.

Make sure your office environment and your wellness goals are in sync. It's counterproductive (and mean!) to ask employees to lose weight when your break rooms are full of junk food. Work with your wellness vendor to remedy those contradictions and promote wellness everywhere.

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