The Problem About the Crisis Chronic diseases are creating a national health care crisis. Chronic diseases - ongoing, generally incurable illnesses, such as asthma, arthritis, cancer, diabetes and heart disease - are the single greatest threat to our nation's health and to our health care system. Below are six "unhealthy truths" about chronic disease in the United States: Truth #1 Chronic diseases are the No. 1 cause of death and disability in the U.S. Treating patients with chronic diseases accounts for 75 percent of the nation's health Truth #2 care spending. Two-thirds of the increase in health care spending is due to increased prevalence of Truth #3 treated chronic disease. The doubling of obesity between 1987 and today accounts for 20 to 30 percent of the Truth #4 rise in health care spending. Truth #5 The vast majority of cases of chronic disease could be better prevented or managed. Many Americans are unaware of the extent to which chronic diseases could be better Truth #6 prevented or managed. (Citations can be found in the "Unhealthy Truths" Powerpoint presentation.) The Impact of Chronic Disease Chronic diseases are the most prevalent and costly health care problems in the United States. Nearly half (45 percent) of all Americans suffer from at least one chronic disease. More than two- thirds of all deaths are caused by one or more of five chronic diseases: heart disease, cancer, stroke, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and diabetes. Many chronic diseases are lifelong conditions, and their impact lessens the quality of life not only of those suffering from the diseases, but also of their family members, caregivers, and others. Chronic disease not only affects health and quality of life, but is also a major driver of health care costs and threatens health care affordability. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), chronic disease accounts for about 75 percent of the nation's aggregate health care spending - or about $5,300 per person in the U.S. each year. In taxpayer-funded programs, treatment of chronic disease constitutes an even larger proportion of spending - 96 cents per dollar for Medicare and 83 cents per dollar for Medicaid. Much of the persistent increase in spending over the past two decades is attributable to rising disease prevalence, lower clinical thresholds for treatment, and new medical innovations that have emerged to treat chronic and other diseases. Unhealthy behavior and increased incidence of chronic disease are also extremely costly in terms of health care coverage affordability. Since 2000, health insurance premiums for employer-sponsored family coverage have increased by 87 percent. Health care costs for people with a chronic condition average $6,032 annually - five times higher than for those without such a condition. Chronic disease also has broader economic impact. Poor health and chronic disease reduce economic productivity by contributing to increased absenteeism, poor performance, and other losses. A Milken Institute analysis determined that treatment of the seven most common chronic diseases, coupled with productivity losses, cost the U.S. economy more than $1 trillion dollars annually. The same analysis estimates that modest reductions in unhealthy behaviors could prevent or delay 40 million cases of chronic illness per year. What is the cost-to-benefit analysis of a Workplace Wellness Program? For many companies, medical costs can consume half of corporate profits or more. It is common now for employers to utilize cost sharing, cost shifting, managed care plans, risk rating, and cash-based rebates or incentives. However, these methods only shift costs. Workplace wellness promotion stands out as the long-term answer for keeping employees healthy and at less risk of disease. Recently, public and private efforts and programs are increasingly designed to promote healthy behaviors. Employers are becoming more aware that overweight and obesity, lack of physical activity, and tobacco use are adversely affecting the health and productivity of their employees and ultimately, the business's bottom line. As a result, innovative employers are providing their employees with a variety of work-site-based health promotion and disease prevention programs. These programs have been show to improve employee health, increase productivity, and yield a significant return on investment for the employer. For example, a recent review of health promotion and disease management programs found a significant return on investment for those programs, with benefit-to-cost ratios ranging from $1.49 to $4.91(median of $3.14) in benefits for every dollar spent on the program. Several major companies with award-winning cost-saving health promotion disease prevention programs include: Not only do individual Americans have the power to effect dramatic change in their personal health status, but also the health statistics of the nation. Cost and Benefit Ratio of the Energyfirst Wellness Program The benefits of the EnergyFirst program corporate clients have recognized include reduced sick days, fewer health care claims, as well as improved productivity, and improved morale and loyalty. Cost of Absenteeism To consider the benefits of such a program, consider the affect on the cost of absenteeism for a company of 150 employees. A recent survey showed that the average rate of absenteeism on any given day is approximately 2.5% i.e. approximately 4 employees absent out of 150 total employees The cost of a sick day is calculated as (salary + 30% employer costs) divided by 240 working days Let's assume the average wage in our example is $40,000 per year. The employer's average cost of a sick day is calculated as: ($40,000 + $12,000) = $217 per day divided by 240. Let's also assume there are 4 absences a day (per the aforementioned survey): $217 X 4 = $868 per day X 240 (working days) = approximately $208,000 per year or $1,387 per employee per year, based on 150 employees. The average cost of absenteeism is $1,387 per employee per year. Based on other company's previous experience with the program the anticipated reduction in absenteeism would be approximately 17.5%, amounting to savings of $243 per employee, per year. Reap the rewards of corporate wellness It's no longer a matter of speculation. Consistent with the newly emerging work site wellness literature, there are tangible benefits associated with work site wellness programs. Improved Professional Image 80% of communication is non-verbal. With an energized and healthy team, your customer service and sales staff will feel better about themselves and be more effective. Increased Productivity The key to productivity is energy. People who are healthy and high-energy are 40% more productive than unhealthy people. Improved Morale As the organizational culture begins to change as a result of your health promotion efforts, you and your employees may actually begin to see and feel a new level of energy within the organization. Ultimately, one of the most ambitious goals of any comprehensive health promotion program is to attempt to influence the attitudes and actions of the organization's most valuable resource - its employees. Reduced Turnover Employee replacement costs can be quite high for any kind of business. The effort and expense associated with running employment ads, reading applications, checking references, interviewing qualified candidates and hiring, and training a new employee can be a serious burden on any business. In light of the challenges that high employee turnover poses, many businesses are looking to health promotion programs as an additional perk that can help to prevent employees from jumping ship. Increased Recruitment Potential In the midst of a very tight labor market, businesses are forced to pull out the stops in order to recruit new talent. In some instances, health promotion can prove to be a very valuable tool in sealing the deal. Reduced Absenteeism When an employee misses work in a business setting, the entire organization is forced to absorb their responsibilities. Even in the event of the occasional absence caused by things like colds and the flu, work can back- up and tensions can build. Even worse is a long-term absence caused by a major health event that requires hospitalization and/or rehabilitation. By preventing certain types of illness caused by poor lifestyle habits, health promotion programs can play an important role in reducing absenteeism. Lower Health Care Costs Healthier employees make fewer health care claims. Improved Employee Health One of the greatest advantages of a well-designed health promotion initiative is the promise of improved health. While not conclusive, there is a growing body of evidence that suggests that well-designed health promotion initiatives can successfully impact such behaviors as smoking, high-risk alcohol use, exercise, nutritional habits, and stress. Increased Profit Bottom line, you and your organization will make more money! NutriScience corporate wellness programs The NutriScience Corporate Wellness program is based on the latest cutting-edge innovations in human biochemistry and exercise physiology research. The nutritional component of the program focuses on choosing the right food as fuel, and the powerful effect that food has on energy level, weight management, and performance. The theoretical underpinning is an understanding of the blood sugar and inflammation pathways, the effect of the three macronutrients (namely protein, fats, and carbohydrates) on the body's blood sugar and hormonal balance, as well as the resultant effect on energy, fat storage, hunger, mental and emotional state, stress, and disease prevention. Healthy Living, Healthy Company Unlike traditional diet programs, the Energyfirst lifestyle approach does not advocate the outdated paradigms of calorie counting, use of scales, and dieting. Instead, the program promotes the tracking of body composition and other indicators of health (including blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, and triglycerides); awareness of physical, mental and emotional energy levels (how you feel); and health-enhancing food choices as a new, positive paradigm for success. Its philosophy is very clear, effective, and is sustainable long-term. Contrary to the prevailing diet industry, there are no gimmicks, pre-packaged meals, or quick-fix, cure-all pills. You Want Results? The program is result-oriented, with 75% of the results attributed to nutrition, 20% to effective exercise, and 5% to essential vitamin/mineral supplementation. The program's success is measured in terms of objectively measurable indicators, including body composition (simultaneous fat loss and enhanced lean muscle mass measured by body fat percentage), circumference measurements, blood panel (cholesterol, triglycerides, glucose), cardiovascular fitness (resting heart rate), and blood pressure; as well as subjectively measurable indicators including energy levels, mental clarity, sense of well-being, and strength. Critical Components Critical concepts underlying the Energyfirst Program include hunger avoidance (through 4-6 meals and/or snacks per day), realistic "cheating" (allowing 1-3 cheat meals per week), and a "measurable progress through reasonable time" approach. Unlike traditional diet programs that have a well-documented 2% success rate, the Energyfirst approach has stood the test of time, with a seven year history showing a high success rate with sustainability and hundreds of testimonials that support its success. What are the components of The EnergyFirst Wellness Program? The Education Components: Seminars - In-house and interactive seminars conducted by trained and certified Nutrition and Wellness experts, cover topics including: Meal and snack preparation demonstration Q&A Body composition testing/individual counseling for seminar participants Training - Cafeteria staff training (in healthy, balanced meal and snack preparation) - in-house wellness program manager in components of the program Weekly conference calls for Q&A, 30 minutes in duration Monthly newsletters (audio and/or written) Audio and video material for in-house website Unlimited email support Daily health diary analysis Educational materials are provided include: Practical Guidebook - Simple-to-follow practical guidebook for every employee covering the basics of the education program - shopping list, 7-day meal plan, snack and meal guides, healthy recipes, how to read labels, etc. Success Journal - including health progress tracking tools DVD educational materials covering the topics below Quick-start guide - brief introduction to the program and quick guide to getting started Topics are covered include: Introduction to a healthy lifestyle Three action steps for achieving health and energy for life Health is a choice (the need to choose behaviors that produce the health results one desires) Motivation for adopting a healthy lifestyle (benefits and results that can be expected) The power of lifestyle (statistics linking lifestyle and top 4 killing diseases) Setting effective, achievable health and fitness goals that will set you up for success (interactive) Why tracking body composition is more effective than tracking weight alone How to use a daily health diary to track progress towards goals Indicators of health and aging (cholesterol, blood pressure, triglycerides, C-reactive protein, Homocysteine, body fat) - what are optimal levels, what are high risk levels Why diets set you up for failure Analysis of popular diets including South Beach, The Zone, Atkins, Weight Watchers, etc. Biological individuality: there is no one-size fits all program A simple equation for optimal health Explanation of how to achieve optimal blood sugar, glucagon, cortisol, and insulin levels and why that is important How food you eat affects blood sugar and hormone levels and their connection with energy fluctuations, weight gain, blood pressure, diabetes, inflammation, cravings, mental fog, stroke, cancer, heart disease Why acid/alkaline balance in the body is important and how to regulate that through diet A simple test to determine your acid/alkaline balance The importance of staying hydrated What foods/liquids are dehydrators The impact of alcohol on the body and how much is acceptable The impact of caffeine on the body and how much is acceptable Test for determining if you are carbohydrate sensitive and predisposed to diabetes What is protein and why is it important High fat protein vs. low fat protein - what is best What are low fat sources of protein Is red meat good for you? Is fish safe? What about dairy? What is whey protein and why are busy people, athletes, and cancer patients using it? Whey protein vs. soy and vegetable protein How much protein do you really need? "Low fat" - the marketing myth Good fats vs. bad fats Is cooking with fats and oils healthy? What are the health benefits of omega 3 and 6 essential fats What are "good carbohydrates"? What are the carbohydrates to avoid and why? Why do you need carbohydrates? How do you determine the perfect ratio of carbohydrates for YOUR body Why "very low carb" and "no carb" diets are not healthy What are the best carbohydrates and how and when should you eat them for optimal health and energy? The benefits of green tea Why artificial sweeteners are not healthy alternatives to sugar What are acceptable healthy sweeteners How to achieve the correct balance of foods for your body Determining optimal caloric intake The Energyfirst shake - the perfect meal (recipes, fine-tuning, taste, texture) - (audience participation) Preparing 7-day meal plans for the entire family Healthy breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snack ideas Healthy snack ideas Healthy lunch ideas Healthy dinner ideas Healthy dessert ideas Healthy dining out Healthy cooking tips Healthy shopping hints How to breathe and exercise properly for optimal energy and fat burning How to get great results with 1.5 hours of exercise a week What is the Heavy Hands Walking program (audience participation) The importance of rest and recovery What are the signs of overtraining? Why we need vitamin/mineral supplementation and what supplements are "essential" What are antioxidants and why do we need them? Discussion of nutrients and herbs that can help prevent and heal common health issues including: high cholesterol, digestive issues, asthma, irritable bowel syndrome, PMS, menopause, colitis, ileitis, arthritis, tendonitis, heart disease, diabetes, cancer, depression, prostrate cancer and BPH, inflammatory disorders, eczema, MS, fibromyalgia, high blood pressure, atherosclerosis, etc. Nutrients and herbs for relieving stress Nutrients and supplements for boosting immunity Essential nutrients for children How to help your children transition to a healthy lifestyle The link between ADD/ADHD and diet What are the simple action steps to kick-start a healthy lifestyle program Fine-tuning your healthy lifestyle for life-long results How to listen to your body to determine what is working and what is not How is each element of the program - nutrition, exercise, and supplementation - implemented? The basic in-house wellness program, to be implemented congruently with the education program, comprises: How is the nutrition component implemented? Pure Water: Offering distilled or reverse osmosis filtered water to employees (preferably in 4 gallon dispensers rather than individual bottles - more cost effective and environmentally sound). Offering tea in addition to coffee, and encouraging decaf coffee rather than caffeinated, as well as healthy alternatives (e.g. stevia) to sugar and artificial sweeteners. EnergyFirst Shake: (Optional) Making available on-site the ingredients and tools necessary to make the EnergyFirst Shake for breakfast (most importantly), lunch, or snacks during the work day (Whey Protein, Omega Oil Blend, Greenergy, frozen fruit, and blender or frozen drink machine in lunch rooms or cafeteria). Healthier snack options: Removing sodas, candy, and chips from vending machines and cafeterias and offering healthy snack alternatives including protein bars, low fat cheese sticks, raw nuts, raw seeds, fruit, and bottled water. Healthier lunch options: Removing hydrogenated fats, fried foods, and sugar-laden desserts from the menu and replacing with grilled chicken salads, tuna salad, salmon, chicken, and tuna burgers on a whole wheat bun with salad, pita bread pockets, cottage cheese, non-fat yogurt, pita pizzas, fresh fruit, raw vegetable sticks with healthy dips, protein bars, almonds, etc. How is the exercise component implemented? Heavy Hands walking program. Installing treadmills and light hand weights (1 to 10 lbs) on-site in an exercise room, displaying full-size graphics of the Heavy Hands walking program. Encouraging (and offering incentives to do so) 30 minute exercise breaks each day. For instance, schedule various exercise time blocks per department. How is the supplementation component implemented? Encouraging the use of a multi vitamin/mineral and antioxidants. Are there any additional lifestyle components that will complement the program? Stress management classes including deep breathing, meditation, and other relaxation techniques that can be implemented during the work day; smoking cessation educational classes and support groups. Enforce a no- smoking policy on premises, coupled with smoking cessation education programs, "the patch" (which is statistically the most effective method for smoking cessation), and support groups. Note: Secure commitment from employees to adopt at least one of the above program components. What other implementation strategies are suggested? Identify healthy eateries and restaurants in close proximity to the workplace. Compile menus from local eateries and identify healthy items for employees to choose from. Post nutrition information on cafeteria food and vending machine options Keep employees constantly informed through continuing education Encourage family participation in education programs. Host family sports day events with healthy snacks provided Host bi-annual health fares offering cholesterol screening, blood pressure tests, blood sugar tests, body composition tests, coupled with education programs. What Metrics are used for tracking progress? Body fat percentage, weight, and circumference measurement tracking once per month; cholesterol screening, blood pressure tests, once every 3 months. What are the anticipated immediate benefits? Increased energy, productivity, drive, focus, and improved customer service, morale, and loyalty. What are the anticipated long term benefits? Improved health statistics, reduced health care costs, reduced absenteeism. Here's a list of programs to offer in conjunction with a Corporate Wellness Program: Keep pure water in site, and in mind Offer distilled or reverse osmosis filtered water to employees (preferably in 4 gallon dispensers rather than individual bottles - more cost effective and environmentally sound). Offer tea in addition to coffee, and encouraging decaf coffee rather than caffeinated, as well as healthy alternatives (e.g. stevia) to sugar and artificial sweeteners. Shake up the office! Make available on-site the ingredients and tools necessary to make the EnergyFirst Shake for breakfast (most importantly), lunch, or snacks during the work day. (Whey Protein, Omega Oil Blend, Greenergy, frozen fruit, and blender or frozen drink machine in lunch rooms or cafeteria). "Healthify" your vending machines and cafeteria menus! Offer healthier snack options: Removing sodas, candy, and chips from vending machines and cafeterias and offering healthy snack alternatives including protein bars, low fat cheese sticks, raw nuts, raw seeds, fruit, and bottled water. Offer Healthier lunch options: Remove hydrogenated fats, fried foods, and sugar-laden desserts from the menu and replace with grilled chicken salads, tuna salad, salmon, chicken, and tuna burgers on a whole wheat bun with salad, pita bread pockets, cottage cheese, non-fat yogurt, pita pizzas, fresh fruit, raw vegetable sticks with healthy dips, protein bars, almonds, etc. Get moving! Install treadmills and provide light hand weights (1 to 10 lbs) on-site in an exercise room, displaying full-size graphics of the Heavy Hands walking program. Encourage (and offer iincentives to do so) 30 minute exercise breaks each day. For instance, schedule various exercise time blocks per department. Take your daily Multi! the use of a multi vitamin/mineral and antioxidants for optimal health and energy. De-stress! Offer stress management classes including deep breathing, meditation, and other relaxation techniques that can be implemented during the work day. Make space for a "quiet room" where staff can go to chill out. Offer a "venting room" with a punching bag and gloves where staff can let off some steam. Better they take it out on the bag than other staff! Enforce a no-smoking policy! Offer smoking cessation educational classes and support groups. Enforce a no-smoking policy on premises, coupled with smoking cessation education programs, "the patch" (which is statistically the most effective method for smoking cessation), and support groups. Lead by Example Secure commitment from your employees to adopt at least one of the above program components. Better yet, tell them what you'll be doing. Lead by example. To ensure success of any corporate wellness program, participation from the employee is essential. The employee's areas of concern are increasing contributions to health care costs and possible loss of health care coverage. Incentives to encourage employee participation could include: Reducing health care contributions More extensive insurance coverage Paid days off to reward results measured by the objective metrics These incentives have been effective, in combination with the EnergyFirst Wellness program and a smoking cessation program, to improve health and productivity and lower health care costs at Gibbs Die Casting, Henderson, KY over a six month period. To ensure sustainability, Make it fun and easy to implement... Identify healthy eateries and restaurants in close proximity to the workplace. Compile menus from local eateries and identify healthy items for employees to choose from. Post nutrition information on cafeteria food and vending machine options Keep employees constantly informed through continuing education (see above) Encourage family participation in education programs. Host family sports day events with healthy snacks provided Host bi-annual health fares offering cholesterol screening, blood pressure tests, blood sugar tests, body composition tests, coupled with education programs. So your team is pumped up and ready to adopt healthy lifestyle habits. That is great news! But, we are all human. Old habits die hard. How many times have you made a New Year's Resolution and kept it for a week before reverting back to your old ways? To ensure your team remains motivated to achieve their goals, we offer various continuing education options to ensure the fire within every individual that attended her seminar continues burning! We offer tele-conferences, private telephone consultation, email Q&A, and articles for publishing in your company newsletter or for posting on your company website. For a continuing education package customized to suit your company's needs, please contact us directly. Enter Actuals Below Annual Health Care Costs $0 Annual % Cost Increase 10% Number of Employees 0 % Employees That Are Obese: 33% % Employees That Are Smokers: 20% Enter Target Data -Obese Employees- Enter Target Percent: 25% -Employees Who Smoke- Enter Target Percent: 15% PROJECTED COSTS IMPACT OF REDUCING OBESITY IMPACT OF REDUCING SMOKING IMPACT OF WELLNESS PROGRAMS Click on the icons to the left to view full-size graphs and corresponding data below. Each graph is based on your data. You can modify your inputs to see how costs would change. You can save the graphs as a PDF or print them all. You can also email a colleague about this tool. Projected Health Care Costs Year Estimated Cost Savings In Health Care Costs Per Year Year Do Nothing Reduced Cost Estimated Savings Savings In Health Care Costs Per Year Year Do Nothing Reduced Cost Estimated Savings Projected After Cost Health Care Savings Year Do Nothing High Impact Wellness Savings Last Year $0 $0 $0 Healthy Behaviors. Healthy People. Healthy Companies.