November is American Diabetes Month. With diabetes on the rise, killing more than 4 million people each year, chances are your company will be affected by it. Not only does it affect your workforce, but it also results in higher insurance claims. So what exactly is diabetes? It’s a serious and chronic disease that causes blood glucose to soar to dangerously high levels.
- Nearly 30 million people in the United States have diabetes
- The total national cost of diagnosed diabetes in the United States is $245 billion
- Direct medical costs reach $176 billion and $69 billion in reduced productivity
- The average medical expenditure among people with diabetes is 2.3 times higher than those without the disease
Source: American Diabetes Association
So to help inspire employees to live more active, healthier lifestyles, we’ve got a few challenge ideas for you to launch at your company this month.
1. Break the Fast!
This year the International Diabetes Federation is promoting the importance of a healthy breakfast. Breaking the fast between dinner and lunch jumpstarts the metabolism and prevents overeating later in the day. It also fuels physical and mental energy that is essential to productivity. Offer your employees an incentive (like points in your wellness program) for starting their day off right with a nutritious meal on at least 4 days each week. To make this more fun, use this guide to plan and serve a healthy breakfast at work to kick off the challenge.
2. Take the Scenic Route
An active lifestyle plays a powerful role in preventing diabetes. Reward your employees for finding ways to incorporate more activity into their daily lives. Whether it’s taking the stairs instead of the elevator, cycling instead of driving or hiking on a new trail, let your employees earn points for their distance. Need help tracking? We have great tips on how to incorporate fitness devices into your wellness program.
3. Lunch and Learn
Knowledge is power! Many people either don’t know or could use a refresher on the facts surrounding diabetes. Invite an expert in to host a lunch and learn and reward your employees for attending. To make this more interesting, consider displaying recipes and healthy cooking tips with everything that’s served at lunch.