Tufts Health Plan Employees Lose 46 Stanley Cups Worth of Weight in Efforts to Keep Workforce Healthy

WATERTOWN, Mass., July 28, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- Losers are winners in the Tufts Health Plan Team Lean Challenge. Now in its fourth year, this annual weight loss challenge modeled after The Biggest Loser enjoyed record participation with 267 employees forming 68 teams of three or four.

The Team Lean Challenge is a 12-week contest that inspires participants not only to lose weight, but to adopt healthy habits, build confidence, and motivate colleagues to succeed in their health and weight goals.  

The 1,583.5 pounds lost translates to 5,542,250 calories burned – the equivalent amount of calories consumed from hot dogs at a Red Sox game. Overall, teams lost an average of 23.28 pounds and individuals lost an average of 5.93 pounds. Almost 60% of participants lost at least 2% of their body weight.

The winning team, Shut Your Trap!, lost a total of 116 pounds, or 13.3% of their starting body weight. The winning individual male and female lost 17.04% and 14.56% of their body weights, respectively. The top three teams and top three individual men and women were awarded cash prizes. Winners were determined by percentage of weight loss.

"We are proud of the hard work and commitment our employees make every year with this challenge. It's important that we walk the walk as a health plan and do everything we can to encourage healthy behavior," said James Roosevelt, Jr., president and CEO of Tufts Health Plan. "Most impressive is that the average Body Mass Index of this year's participants dropped 2.87 points – a full risk category of improvement."

In another effort to promote wellness in the workplace, Tufts Health Plan recently expanded its pilot program to install workstations where employees can walk on treadmills while working. These Sit-to-Walkstations, produced by desk manufacturer Steelcase in partnership with the Mayo Clinic, provide benefits that counteract issues that are associated with a sedentary work environment, such as muscle soreness, back pain, and poor posture.

"Using the Sit-to-Walkstation is a way for employees to incorporate movement into their daily work activities," said Lydia Greene, vice president of human resources and diversity. "I've tried it, and the movement of the slow treadmill is very natural."

Now there are four Sit-to-Walkstations located throughout the building where employees can sign up for one-hour shifts. The treadmill moves at a maximum of two miles per hour and is attached to an adjustable-height desk with a phone and computer.

About Tufts Health Plan

Tufts Health Plan is a nonprofit health plan available in Massachusetts and Rhode Island.  The Plan is recognized nationwide for its commitment to providing innovative, high-quality health care coverage.  More information about the organization is available on its website, www.tuftshealthplan.com.

SOURCE Tufts Health Plan