FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Free Health and Wellness Program Pays Coloradans To Adopt Healthy Behaviors and Achieve Weight Loss Resolutions

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MEDIA CONTACT: Kaytee Long | Health Promotion Manager |        O: 303-694-8012 | C: 303-619-8571 | klong@weighandwin.com

DENVER, Dec. 30, 2014 ­­– ‘Ring in the New You’ with Kaiser Permanente supported program, Weigh and Win. The free community platform is helping Coloradans achieve New Year’s resolution weight-loss goals by providing technology-based coaching, fitness plans, weekly grocery lists and meal plans. Those who begin the program at an unhealthy weight (BMI ≥ 25) qualify for cash rewards. Additional prizes are awarded for adopting healthy behaviors. ‘Ring in the New You’ is designed to keep participants engaged after the initial New Year’s resolution hype fades.

According to a study done at the University of Scranton, the number one New Year’s resolution of 2014 was to “lose weight.” “Staying fit and healthy” followed at number five. Of the 47 percent of Americans who usually make New Year’s resolutions, only 64 percent maintain them past one month and 46 percent past six months. According to the same university study, only 8 percent of people are successful in achieving New Year’s resolution goals.

“When I started the Weigh and Win program, I weighed 390 pounds. Getting paid to lose weight was a real motivator for me,” said Carletta Alber, Weigh and Win success story. “I cannot even begin to tell you how much better I feel, both physically and emotionally. I have lost 180 pounds and earned $565 in cash rewards.”

The Weigh and Win semi-annual  Team Challenge begins February 1, 2015. Participants put together teams of four to eight and compete with other teams across Colorado over a three month period. Prizes are awarded for average weight improvement (percentage) and average HEALTHpoints. HEALTHpoints are accumulated through opening Weigh and Win emails, receiving text message weight loss reminders, Facebook “Brags,” taking health quizzes, linking a Fitbit and journal entries. The top three teams in both categories receive prizes and a $1,000 charitable donation, in addition to normal incentives for weight loss. Last year, 121 teams participated in the challenge.

The average weight improvement for successful Weigh and Win participants after one year in the program is 17.7 pounds or an 8 percent weight loss. For those who simply participate in the Team Challenge, the average is 20.5 pounds lost, while Challenge team captains lose an average of 22.3 pounds (over a one year period).

“The New Year is an ideal time to make a lifestyle change,” said Lia Schoepke, Weigh and Win Program Manager. “Weigh and Win is a unique resource that provides the tools needed to change habits and begin living a healthy lifestyle.”

To date, more than 54,500 Coloradans have signed up for Weigh and Win as a commitment to health improvement, earning a total of $300,000 in cash rewards.

Ring in the New You Tips

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About Weigh and Win: As a free, first-of-its-kind community program, Weigh and Win utilizes verified weight loss data through patented photographed weigh-ins and provides Colorado adults with access to an effective weight management platform. The program engages participants with rewards tied to measured results and is aimed at decreasing obesity rates. Weigh and Win is primarily funded by Kaiser Permanente to complement the organization’s other efforts to increase healthy eating and physical activity throughout the state.  Colorado residents 18 and over can sign up for free and will receive daily coaching on healthy eating and active living by email or text message. The coaching includes tips for weight loss, daily exercise and meal plans, weekly grocery shopping lists and more. Progress is tracked through quarterly weigh-ins at one of 56 community kiosk locations throughout the state. Success is rewarded with quarterly cash rewards for weight loss and maintenance, as well as monthly prize drawings for participating. Those who begin the program at an unhealthy weight (BMI ≥ 25) qualify for cash rewards.  Sign up for free at www.weighandwin.com. Follow Weigh and Win on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter.

Ring in the New You!

FINAL Main VisualRing in the New Year with a healthy beginning! There is no time like New Year’s resolution time to make your goals a reality. Follow our tips to help you stay on track and make 2015 YOUR year!

Five Steps for (Actually) Keeping Your Weight-Loss Resolution! Sign up for Weigh and Win to receive more helpful healthy tips. It’s free!

1. Tell Your Friends and Family About Your Goals: It’s much easier to stick to your goals when others are holding you accountable. Share your objectives with loved ones to keep yourself motivated.

2. Make it a Team Effort: Studies show that groups of 2 or more often produce stronger weight-loss results. Put together a small, or large, team to help keep you motivated. Sign up for the Weigh and Win Team Challenge (Feb.1-April 30) for extra motivation, tips and teamwork!

3. Write Everything Down: Write down your goals, food intake and fitness plan. Track progress with quarterly weigh-ins at your local Weigh and Win kiosk.

4. Plan Ahead: Plan your meals for the day to stay on track. Office goodies can be enticing, but if you have a snack or meal on hand, it will be easier to keep your goals in mind.

5. Reward Your Progress: Reward yourself for progress! Maybe it is a healthy food option or a small treat, a trip to your favorite store for a pair of ‘skinny’ jeans, or an outdoor activity. Stay away from high calorie rewards. We don’t want to be counter-productive!

Healthy Holidays Tip #6 – Responsible Drinking

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Beverages are an easy way to add unnecessary calories to your day. This New Year be aware of the health effects of the beverages you’re drinking – alcoholic and non-alcoholic alike.

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Drink in Moderation– The best way to stay healthy is to drink in moderation with only a few alcoholic drinks in an evening. Keep your beverages on the rocks, the melting ice will dilute the drink and make it last longer.

Hidden Calories – Be aware of the calories in the drinks you’re choosing. Beverages mixed with cream and sugary mixers can have upwards of 400+ calories. For example, eggnog can run you 300-400 calories a glass! The calories in juices and punches can add up, not to mention the high sugar content.

Alternate with Water –  We all know the rule; for every alcoholic beverage you consume, have one glass of water. Aside from maintaining a steady alcohol level, filling your stomach with water may also lessen your desire for additional holiday drinks. 

Keep it Simple –  Often times, the more ingredients added to fancy cocktails will equate to more calories. Play it safe by sticking to simple drinks like a glass of wine or champagne.

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Healthy Holidays Tip #5 – Watch Your Portions

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When there’s delicious food everywhere you look it can be hard not to eat until you’re stuffed. Watching your portions will help prevent you from gaining weight during the holidays.

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Use Smaller Plates- Something as simple as using a small plate will help you serve appropriate portion sizes.

Maintain a Balance – When dishing up remember to maintain a balanced plate with one half fruits and vegetables, one quarter quality carbohydrates and one quarter lean protein. If you’re at a party, fill up your plate with the healthy options first.

Keep Count– It’s easy to lose count of how much you’ve eaten with bite size appetizers and snacks. Try to be conscious of what you’re consuming by keeping a count.

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Kaiser Permanente and incentaHEALTH Present: “Employee Wellness on a Budget” at The 11th Annual Executive Forum on Rewarding Healthy Behaviors February 4, 2015 at the Bellagio® Las Vegas

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Explore a Measureable and Affordable Model for Community and Corporate Wellness

DENVER, Dec. 18, 2014– In 2011, cloud-based digital wellness company incentaHEALTH teamed up with Kaiser Permanente to launch Weigh and Win, the first program of its kind to translate an evidence-based worksite wellness program into a community platform for the general public. Weigh and Win has paved the way for measurable and affordable community and corporate wellness. Kaiser Permanente’s Senior Manager of Primary Prevention Services, Amy Bayer, and incentaHEALTH’s Weigh and Win Program Manager, Lia Schoepke, will present “Employee Wellness on a Budget” at The 11th Annual Executive Forum on Rewarding Healthy Behaviors Wednesday, Feb. 4, 2015 at the Bellagio® Las Vegas.

Bayer and Schoepke will discuss enrollment, engagement and results of the data-based wellness programs, including the dramatic health improvement of community members and employer groups and how it affects return on investment. According to an independent study completed by a researcher at Colorado State University, for every $1 invested into the community program, $3.42 is saved in reduced community health care costs.

“We want to provide affordable, effective options for employers and community partners while providing measureable results that can directly relate back to ROI,” said Schoepke.

Additional topics will include: incentaHEALTH’s unique behavioral change model; how social media, team challenges and data can dynamically affect engagement; implementation of a Spanish-speaking platform; the use of automated kiosks to ensure measurable wellness; and the effect personalized health coaching through SMS text messages and email has on weight loss.

incentaHEALTH’s model focuses on rewarding performance rather than participation. Developed through the company’s incentivized corporate wellness model, Weigh and Win is a free community program available to all Colorado residents (18 years and older) that teaches healthy habits and pays cash rewards for weight improvement and maintenance. Participants who join the program at an unhealthy weight (BMI ≥ 25) qualify for cash rewards. Additional prizes are awarded for adopting healthy behaviors. Kaiser Permanente is the founding funder of Weigh and Win as part of its commitment to provide high-quality, affordable health care services and to improve the health of their members and the communities they serve.

“When you’re at a healthy weight, you feel better, are more productive and more likely to make healthy choices. We are proud to provide the Weigh and Win program as a way to encourage people to lose weight and lead healthier lifestyles,” said Bayer.

The average weight improvement for successful Weigh and Win participants after one year in the program is 17.7 pounds or an 8 percent weight loss. Similar initiatives have been achieved in workplace settings as the average employee loses 6 percent of their body weight. Recent research suggests that a 3-5 percent weight loss of a person’s body weight produces meaningful health benefits, such as reducing risk of Type 2 Diabetes and the need for cholesterol and heart medications. Over 9,245 participants in the Weigh and Win program have lost at least 3 percent of their body weight.

To date, more than 54,000 Coloradans have signed up for Weigh and Win as a commitment to health improvement, earning a total of $300,000 in cash rewards.

“Our goal is to reward 100 million people for engaging in a H.E.A.L. (Healthy Eating, Active Living) lifestyle. Our success in Colorado is one piece of the puzzle,” said Schoepke.

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About incentaHEALTH: incentaHEALTH is a cloud-based health care technology company with headquarters in Denver, Colorado. As a leader in measurable wellness programs, incentaHEALTH’s system is designed to help organizations and communities reduce their health care costs by offering incentives to individuals for improving their health. incentaHEALTH helps people manage their weight through the use of interactive email and text message coaching, weigh-ins on private kiosks in corporate and community locations, and cash rewards for sustained weight loss success. The patented HEALTHspot® kiosk takes full-length digital photos and keeps an electronic record of each participant’s weight, blood pressure and body mass index (BMI). Participants also have access to health coaches who provide live support whenever it’s needed. Organizations throughout the U.S., the U.K., Puerto Rico and Singapore have implemented this health care solution for their employees and have reported significant success. For more information, visit www.incentahealth.com, or follow the company on Facebook or Twitter.

About Kaiser Permanente Colorado: Kaiser Permanente Colorado is the state’s largest nonprofit health plan, proudly working to improve the lives and health of Colorado residents for 45 years. Kaiser Permanente Colorado provides comprehensive health care services to more than 624,000 members through 28 medical offices and a network of affiliated hospitals and physicians. The health plan was named “Highest in Member Satisfaction” among Commercial Health Plans by J.D. Power and Associates for the seventh straight year. Kaiser Permanente was recognized by the National Committee for Quality Assurance (NCQA) as the top- ranked commercial health plan in Colorado and the sixth ranked Medicare plan in the nation for 2014-15. Kaiser Permanente was also recently recognized as a 2012 Hypertension Champion by Million Hearts™. In 2013, Kaiser Permanente proudly directed more than $96 million to community benefit programs to improve the health of all Coloradans. For more Kaiser Permanente news, visit kp.org/share or follow us on Twitter @kpcolorado or facebook.com/kpcolorado.

About Weigh and Win: As a free, first-of-its-kind community program, Weigh and Win utilizes verified weight loss data through patented photographed weigh-ins and provides Colorado adults with access to an effective weight management platform. The program engages participants with rewards tied to measured results and is aimed at decreasing obesity rates. Weigh and Win is primarily funded by Kaiser Permanente to complementthe organization’s other efforts to increase healthy eating and physical activity throughout the state.  Colorado residents 18 and over can sign up for free at www.WeighandWin.com and will receive daily coaching on healthy eating and active living by email or text message. The coaching includes tips for weight loss, daily exercise and meal plans, weekly grocery shopping lists and more. Progress is tracked through quarterly weigh-ins at one of 56 community kiosk locations throughout the state. Success is rewarded with quarterly cash rewards for weight loss and maintenance, as well as monthly prize drawings for participating. Those who begin the program at an unhealthy weight (BMI ≥ 25) qualify for cash rewards.  For more information visit www.weighandwin.com. Follow Weigh and Win on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter.

 

Healthy Holiday Tip #4 – Staying Healthy On the Go

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The holidays are a busy time with holiday shopping to complete, holiday parties to attend and school concerts to watch. With all these obligations, you may find yourself frequently eating on the go.

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Food Court Temptation- It can be hard to resist the food court when you catch whiffs of cinnamon rolls and pretzels as you walk by. Try to plan your shopping route away from the food court so you’re not tempted.

Healthy Fast Food – If you need to eat out, make sure you’re making healthy choices like salads with the dressing on the side or sandwiches with healthy toppings and go without the soda and chips.

Keep Portable Foods on Hand– Keep a cupboard of healthy, on-the-go foods available like nuts, fruit, and hummus and veggies to grab as you walk out the door. Also, try to stock the fridge and freezer with pre-made healthy meals that can be heated up quickly.

Plan Your Shopping Trips In-between Meals – Plan to leave for your errands just after you have filled up on a healthy meal so it is easier to avoid fast food temptations due to hunger.

Track Your Steps – Wear an activity tracking pedometer, like a Fitbit, this holiday season and you may be surprised to know how many miles you actually walk while shopping for gifts, groceries, etc. Aim for 10,000 steps each day. Walking 10,000 steps a day can equate to about 400-500 calories burned. Don’t be surprised if this device works as motivation to be more active this holiday season. You might find that you won’t mind as much when the only available parking spot is in the very back of the parking lot!

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Healthy Holidays Tip #3 – Make Time to Stay Active

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Between work, holiday parties and Christmas shopping, it can feel like you don’t have time to exercise. Since you’re more than likely consuming more calories than normal, it’s important to try to remain active during the holidays.

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Stick to Your Regular Routine – Try to stick to your regular workout regime as much as possible.

Have 15 Minutes? – Understandably schedules get busy and you simply don’t have time for your normal, longer workouts. Try short, high intensity 15 minute tabata workouts. Everyone can find 15 minutes of time.

Get Everyone Active Together– Just because you have a house full of guests doesn’t mean you have to sit around all day. Try planning healthy activities like ice skating, building a snow man or taking an evening stroll to look at Christmas lights.

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Healthy Holidays Tip #2 – Staying Healthy at Work

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When you walk into the break room, there’s always a new tray of treats. If you grab a cookie or some meat and cheese every time you walk in there, those calories are going to add up. Just keep a few quick tips in mind and you can remain healthy while at work, while still leaving room for the occasional cookie.

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Avoid the Break Room

If the break room is the place where all the treats congregate – avoid the room! You’ll be less tempted if the cookies aren’t staring you in the eye.

Stock Up on Healthy Snacks

Have plenty of healthy snacks on hand like nuts, fruit or granola bars. If you’re full on healthy items, you won’t reach for a cookie as a hunger impulse.

Counteract the Calories

It takes a lot of willpower to say no every time. If you do want some of those office snacks, make sure you counteract those extra treats with some additional activity. Take the stairs, walk the long way to the rest room, or do some desk exercises before you treat yourself.

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