Encourage Employers to Institute Incentive-Based Weight Loss Programs

Target: President Barack Obama

Goal: Make it mandatory for businesses to include incentive-based weight loss programs in their standard operating procedures to help further employee health.

A recent study showed that employees with financial incentive to lose weight did so at a much greater pace than those who did have similar incentives. The difference between the two was extraordinarily striking, and hinted that a large-scale weight loss program could have a profound effect on the fight against obesity. It should be encouraged for all businesses to institute optional financial incentive-based weight programs for their employees to utilize at their discretion.

The study polled 100 adults aged 18-63, offering one group a $20 bonus if they reached their goal of a 4-pound monthly loss (with a $20 penalty if they did not) and the other group no such financial incentive. The average weight loss of the first group over the course of the study was 9.08 pounds; the average weight loss of the second group over the course of the study was 2.34 pounds. Therefore the difference between the two programs accounted to over a 6.5-pound difference in weight loss.

President Obama should look into establishing a financial incentive-based weight loss program at every firm and company in the country to help make workers healthier. Such a plan should not be mandatory, of course, but employees should be given the option to partake in it, and should receive financial compensation for doing so to help give their journey toward better health a better chance of success. The president should require that each firm and company in the country institute a plan such as this as part of their standard operating procedure.


Dear President Obama,

Recent studies have shown that people on weight loss programs find much more success if there are financial rewards for losing weight. As you know, obesity has extremely negative health effects and is a leading cause of many of the world’s deadliest diseases. Therefore, it is necessary to use this newly found study to make your workforce healthier and safer.

All businesses need to include an optional weight loss plan with financial rewards. This is not to say, of course, that employees should be held to an impossible or unhealthy standard of losing weight; they should simply be able to be rewarded for getting healthier and living a healthier lifestyle. Therefore, the goals involved in such a hypothetical plan should be outrageous or impossible; they should be realistic and achievable, so that when an employee completes them they are provided positive reinforcement for healthier living.

It will require specifics and a lot of planning and ironing out, but it will be a great boon to overall public health if a plan like this is instituted at every business across the country. Employees will receive incentive to become healthier, and as a result you will have a happier and healthier nation on your hands. Get started on this plan, Mr. President; this country sure could use it.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: davidd via Flickr

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One Comment

  1. This petition is not meant to state that the weight loss plan ITSELF should be mandatory, but that it should be mandatory for companies themselves to make it part of their SOP so that all employees have the opportunity to be a part of it if they want.

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