Simple changes to promote healthy habits at work place can help employees from gaining weight, says study.
However, these types of environmental interventions aren't likely to lead to weight loss- even when combined with an individual weight-management program, according to the study by researchers at University of Georgia and Emory University.
The researchers report on the impact of environmental interventions at several Dow Chemical Company worksites. They found that simple, low-cost interventions-for example, encouraging workers to take the stairs and making healthy options available in vending machines-helped to avoid employee weight gain.
They study also evaluated the effects of a voluntary, low-intensity individual weight-management program. The program was popular, with about 60 percent of eligible workers participating.
"However, employees who participated in the individually focused intervention were no more successful at losing weight than those who were only exposed to the environmental interventions," said researchers.
"Low-cost environmental interventions provide an opportunity for worksites to encourage weight maintenance and control in the general employee population," concluded researchers conclude.
The study has been published in the March Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.