Get workers healthy with office-hour lifestyle exercises

Want to see your employees healthy and in shape? Get them to do some lifestyle exercises well within the office premises.

IANS| Last Updated: Mar 08, 2015, 21:39 PM IST

Washington: Want to see your employees healthy and in shape? Get them to do some lifestyle exercises well within the office premises.

A healthy lifestyle intervention programme administered at the workplace significantly reduces risk factors for diabetes and heart disease, shows a new study.

The programme was administered at the workplace and developed by University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health.

"Health care expenditures associated with diabetes are spiralling, causing widespread concern, particularly for employers who worry about their employees' health and productivity," said lead author M. Kaye Kramer from University of Pittsburgh.

The programme comprised 22 sessions over a one-year period and aimed at helping people make lifestyle changes to improve health.

Over the course of a year, participants lost an average of five percent of their body weight (10 pounds) and shrunk their waistlines by about two inches.

They also increased their physical activity almost two-fold.

Of the participants, 96 percent said they felt it was beneficial to offer the programme at the worksite, and 99 percent said they would recommend it to their co-workers.

"This current effort in the worksite shows clearly that a proven healthy lifestyle programme offered to people where they work is not only feasible but effective in reducing risk factors for diabetes and heart disease for participating employees," concluded principal investigator Andrea Kriska from Pitt Public Health's department of epidemiology.

The study appeared in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.