Health

Keas partners with nutrition experts to encourage employee wellness

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The typical employer pays an average of $10,000 a year per employee for healthcare.

Keas announced at Healthbeat today two new content partnerships with My Healthy Dish and Noshtopia that will help employees make wiser nutritional choices and save employers money on health care costs.

Businesses use Keas to create and manage their workplace health programs. The system promotes healthy behavior and teamwork by rewarding people for achieving simple exercise and nutrition goals through games and social motivation. Keas’ CEO Josh Stevens said that seventy to eighty percent of health care costs are preventable, like those caused by smoking and over-eating, or conditions triggered by certain habits and behaviors. Unhealthy habits can lead to lower productivity and the business bears the brunt of these costs. Keas uses gamification to make losing weight and making healthy choices a fun, social, and mobile experience.

“It is in employers’ best interest to motivate their employees to do the right thing,” Stevens said. “Healthcare costs are rising and every time an employee takes personal time off to visit a doctor or fill a prescription can result in $250-$500 in productivity costs. The productivity savings of health employees are huge.”

Stevens said his goal is to provide solutions for the “99 percent of a patient’s life when they are not a patient.” Often this means supporting actions like eating more fruits and vegetables and reducing stress. Obesity-related conditions cost around $150 billion a year and a nutritious diet is a central element of overall wellness.

Keas recently conducted a survey to track employee sentiment towards nutrition and gain insight into what it can do to improve workforce habits. The survey found that 73 percent of the U.S. workforce frequently or always reads nutrition labels, 86 percent is eating breakfast at least 5 days a week, and 94 percent is increasing the daily intake of fruits and vegetables. 63 percent believe that fast food and junk food are leading causes of obesity, and an increasing number of people are turning to home-cooking in an effort to eat healthier.

The partnerships with My Healthy Dish and Noshtopia will help employees do things like prepare green smoothies for the morning and provide inspiration for simple-to-prepare healthy dinners.

“These are the folks that publish best content in nutrition,” Stevens said. “They provide meal planning and recipe ideas from experts that employees can use for inspiration. We want to bring everyone together, including CFOs, HR teams, wellness experts, and employees in one central portal.”

The easier it is to integrate nutritious eating into every day life, the healthier employees will be and the less employers will have to pay. It seems like a win-win, except for, maybe, the fast food franchises.

Photo Credit: Michael O’Donnell/VentureBeat