No New Year's resolution necessary: East Jordan Iron Works employees drop major pounds with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan's Win by Losing weight-loss competition

With the holiday season in full swing, 93 employees from local business rally to lose 708 pounds during 12-week competition

December 8, 2011

OAK PARK — The holiday season is here, and employees at East Jordan Iron Works are determined to maintain their new, healthier lifestyles. By participating in Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan’s weight-loss competition Win by Losing, they have gained the knowledge and strength to avoid a second helping of mashed potatoes and gravy at their next holiday gathering.

“We are very proud of the enthusiastic participation of our employees and their commitment to adopting a healthier lifestyle,” said Tom Teske, vice president and general manager at East Jordan Iron Works. “This commitment is reflected in their positive efforts every day with our customers. We thank Blue Cross for providing us with this opportunity to build a healthier and more efficient work environment.”

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan recognized the importance of wellness in the workplace when Win by Losing was developed in 2009. The goal of the program is to encourage employees to incorporate healthy eating and exercise into their every-day routine. Studies have shown that employers can improve the health and productivity of their employees and ultimately save money on health care costs by implementing wellness-related programs, such as Win by Losing.

“The concept of Win by Losing is simple: it’s a free, fun and easy program that any company can implement,” said Ken Dallafior, senior vice president of Group Business and Corporate Marketing at BCBSM. “A healthy future for Michigan residents is our top priority, and we invite local businesses of all sizes to participate in this challenge and encourage their employees to take that first step toward adopting healthier lifestyles.”

The weight-loss challenge is part of the Blues’ commitment of leading Michigan to a healthier future. And with the holidays quickly approaching, the Blues are encouraging all Michigan residents to watch what they eat and maintain an exercise routine throughout the season.

The Blues encourage all Michigan residents to engage in healthy holiday habits, which can lead to weight loss at a time of the year when the average American gains eight to 12 pounds. Win by Losing has a website that hosts a variety of online tools including a series of health and wellness videos featuring Blue Cross health coaches, diet and exercise tips, low-calorie recipes, meal plans and links to healthy lifestyle blogs from A Healthier Michigan. Although the website was created for participants, the Blues are encouraging all members to take advantage of the resources available on the website during the holidays.

Since the Blues launched the first round of competition in the fall of 2009, participants from across the state have discovered the benefits of achieving healthier lifestyles. Between five rounds of the Win by Losing competition, participating groups have lost 27,000 pounds — more than 13 tons.

For more information about Win by Losing, visit bcbsm.com/yourhealth.

Editor’s note: Additional success stories are available by contacting newsroom@bcbsm.com.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, a nonprofit organization, provides and administers health benefits to more than 4.3 million members residing in Michigan in addition to members of Michigan-headquartered groups who reside outside the state. The company offers a broad variety of plans including Community Blue, Simply Blue and Healthy Blue Incentives PPOs; Blue Care Network HMO; BCN Healthy Blue Living; Flexible Blue plans compatible with health savings accounts; Medicare Advantage; Part D Prescription Drug plans; and MyBlue products in the under-age-65 individual market. BCBSM also offers dental, vision and hearing plans. Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Blue Care Network are nonprofit corporations and independent licensees of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. For more company information, visit bcbsm.com.