Obesity in the Workplace
Obesity is a very real problem for workplaces across the UK, costing the economy in excess of £10 billion per year.
Research suggests obese workers represent 26% of the workforce but are responsible for 67% of the healthcare cost, and on average obese employees take four extra sick days per year.
Obesity is the underlying cause of many conditions that can be readily recognised and which have a both a direct and indirect impact on productivity. Weight is a very strong determinant of disease risk and associated with age presents an increased risk variable. The issues are complex and inter-related.
At MoreLife, we know that:
- Obesity causes increased risk of type 2 Diabetes, Stroke, some cancers, coronary heart disease (CHD), liver disease and high blood pressure
- Musculoskeletal Disorders increase as weight increases
- There is significant sleep apnoea risk in obese adults
- Over 50% of MoreLife’s adult service users report mental health problems including stress, anxiety and depression (causal and consequential to weight)
- Increased risk of injuries at work
- Obese workers have been found to be 20-34% less productive than normal weight colleagues
- 53% of US companies have instigated a weight management intervention which has an ROI of 6:1 largely attributable to a reduced sickness absence rate of 32%.