Yesterday we reported how new data shows that negative health outcomes in America may be reduced through improved strategies and “greater investment in preventive and medical care across the life course.”
The results come from new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). The report compares health data across states and highlights several health risk factors that can be addressed as part of a well-run workplace wellness program. These include:
- “This study shows that high BMI, smoking, and high fasting plasma glucose are the 3 most important risk factors in the United States, and that although smoking is decreasing, BMI and fasting plasma glucose levels are steadily increasing.”
- “These 2 risk factors pose unique challenges in the United States given that unabated, they have the potential to change the health trajectory for individuals in many states.”
- “Levels of overweight and obesity increased during the study period. US residents need to do more to maintain their weight or reduce it, when needed, as well as access systems to support these intentions.”
- “Although physical activity increased during the study period, the levels of increase were not enough to control weight gain.”
- “Physical inactivity is a risk factor for many diseases, but increasing activity is not enough on its own to reduce weight or prevent weight gain.”
- “Obesity is associated with increased diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, some neoplasms, and poor health-related quality of life.”
Workplace Wellness Strategies
The study also calls “for renewed efforts to control weight gain at the community level.” This includes strategies to address some of these health concerns.
The report notes: “The strategies for dealing with the remaining inequalities and new threats are 3-fold:”
- “Address some of the key modifiable risks, including diet; tobacco, alcohol, and drug use; insufficient physical activity; and obesity;”
- “Improve access to and, more importantly, quality of care in key areas, such as chronic kidney disease and ongoing care for substance use disorders; and”
- “Address the social determinants of health.”
Some of these strategies are part of a well-run workplace wellness program. For example, the report notes that “Research has shown that some environmental factors have an effect on risk factors such as obesity and low physical activity… Opportunities to decrease the burden of disease through reducing tobacco, alcohol, drug use, blood pressure, and cholesterol; increasing physical activity; and improving diet emphasize that the United States should invest more in prevention that targets these risks.”
Tomorrow we’ll highlight the study’s insights around diet.