With busy schedules and the high cost of many of the health products on the market, consumers are anxious to know how to stay healthy on the go. Ohio State University Extension offers a research based program that provides high touch, high tech opportunities for busy folks to participate. The free programs include a weight loss challenge, healthy living blog, and wellness messages. Facebook and twitter are used to reinforce healthy living principles including healthy people, healthy relationships, and healthy finances.
These programs are offered by a group entitled the Live Healthy, Live Well Team. They offer three challenges each year. These challenges include twice weekly educational messages. These brief email messages come to your email inbox. Even if you are already working on changing a behavior or have already mastered the behavior change addressed in the email (such as drink more water, incorporate more activity into your day) a quick reminder can be most helpful. The challenges start with a brief survey for evaluation purposes. You do not have to give your weight or the amount of weight you are trying to lose. Names are utilized for prizes only.
Each challenge has tracking logs for individual progress, Facebook account for group interaction, and weekly drawings from participants for wellness and fitness prizes. These prizes are mailed to the winners or delivered by hand if the participant lives or works in close vicinity to the Extension office. The goals of the challenges are to improve overall health and well-being. Results from the online challenges have been encouraging: 80% of the participants have reduced their risk of chronic disease, and 95% have lost or maintained their weight.
Read more about the challenges on the blog: Live Healthy Live Well.