incentaHEALTH strives to ensure Colorado maintains ranking as state with lowest obesity rates
Denver, February 3, 2020: Obesity rates have more than doubled since the 1980s; and a recent report from The New England Journal of Medicine predicts that by 2030, nearly 1 in 2 adults will suffer from obesity, or a BMI higher than 30. Additionally, the report notes that by 2030 obesity rates will be higher than 50 percent in 29 states.
Colorado, however, consistently ranks in the top ten healthiest states, and maintains the lowest prevalence of obesity of any state at 23 percent. While much of Colorado’s success can be attributed to an overall healthier population when compared to the rest of the United States, there are also companies that strive to combat the obesity epidemic and ensure Colorado’s place at the top—companies like incentaHEALTH.
Created in 2003 by Jack Rule and Todd McGuire, incentaHEALTH originally worked to combat the interrelated issues of increasing obesity rates and rising corporate employer healthcare costs. As the program evolved, opportunities arose to combat obesity on the local community level with the creation of the Weigh and Win program. Using behavior economics, Weigh and Win works by addressing individual barriers and motivators, providing daily meal and exercise guidelines, personal coaching from Certified Personal Trainers, and rewarding weight loss with cash incentives. Community kiosks throughout Colorado capture a “Healthy Selfie,” or a photographed weigh-in, that shows participants their weight, BMI, and photo history of their weight loss journey.
To date, nearly 110,000 Coloradans have participated in the program and $775,000 has been paid out to those who have achieved a 5 percent or greater weight improvement. Additionally, over 375,000 pounds have been lost, leading to significant health care savings and chronic disease prevention. As referenced in a study of Weigh and Win published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine, 71 percent of people with 2 or more weigh-ins are losing weight, with a third of those participants achieving the coveted 5 percent weight improvement benchmark. Data shows participants keep it off, too, with the average duration of weight loss at 1.7 years.
“One of the best things about this program is there is a weigh-in location at my rec center,” said Weigh and Win member, Craig McCoy. “I really started to get motivated when I weighed in and saw some pounds come off. I noticed the differences in the pictures and it motivated me to keep going.”
Craig is also experiencing the positive impacts on his health. “I just had annual blood tests done and found out my LDL and total cholesterol dropped significantly to healthy levels. My good cholesterol rose and my A1C dropped to a healthy level so I am not in danger of diabetes anymore.”
As digital tools continue to evolve, incentaHEALTH is bringing new innovations to the Weigh and Win platform to help make it even easier to tackle pressing health issues like obesity and type 2 diabetes. “We have recently launched a new wireless scale that connects to a smart phone and allows our members to visually track their “Healthy Selfie” progress from home for the times when you can’t make it out to a community kiosk,” said Todd McGuire, co-founder of incentaHEALTH.
Interested participants can go to www.WeighAndWin.com to enroll and find a nearby kiosk location. Enrollment is quick and easy, and is offered at a low rate for Colorado residents only. Employer groups interested in sponsoring this wellness program for their employees can contact [email protected].