Tuesday, May 13, 2008

The Costs of Weight on Business

“In the last 30 years, the rate of obesity in the United States has more than doubled. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that 32 percent of adults in the U.S. are overweight and 34 percent are obese, as defined by the World Health Organization. Maintaining healthy weight is important to workers themselves and should also be a high priority for employers who value their employees' health. Last year, a Duke University Medical Center study of the health records of more than 11,000 university employees found that obese workers filed twice the number of workers' compensation claims, had seven times higher medical costs from those claims and lost 13 times more days of work from work injury or work illness than other workers. The reality is that preventing obesity is considerably cheaper than treating people once they become obese. The Conference Board says wellness programs to address the obesity issue can get return on investment (ROI) of up to $5 per $1 invested.”


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