Petting zoos may be a new trend in wellness, as companies such as Squeals on Wheels in Maryland bring a traveling menagerie to companies that want to help reduce employee stress. Honey Hill Farm brought camels to a shipping logistics company in Cincinnati for Hump Day and Tiny Tails to You based in Austin, Texas, has sent its petting zoo to Apple, Facebook, Dell and Whole Foods.
Silicon Valley companies attract top talent using wellness perks, such as personal life coaches, organic meals and treadmills offered to Asana employees. Microsoft's corporate wellness center offers workers health screenings, acupuncture, diet counseling, and an on-campus sports field for Frisbee, basketball, soccer, football and other games.
Interest among women is driving an increase in boxing fitness gyms in Michigan that offer high-intensity workouts using boxing, kickboxing and mixed martial arts. Owners say about 70% of their members are women and industry experts note the gyms may appeal to women who like challenges, are bored with their regular gym routine, or have goals beyond weight loss or maintenance.
A study in JAMA Otolaryngology found smoking and drinking among individuals with head and neck cancers increased the risk of dying twofold and 68%, respectively, compared with nonsmokers and nondrinkers. The findings, based on patients diagnosed and treated during the period from 1997 to 2012, also showed an 87% greater mortality risk among patients who were unmarried, compared with married patients.
Adults who were born preterm have smaller lung airways, which may lead to respiratory problems, compared with those who were born full term, according to a study in the journal Experimental Physiology. The findings, based on lung function test data, suggest respiratory treatments may not be as effective among those born prematurely, but more studies are needed, said researcher Joseph Duke.
Adolescents with smartphone or internet addiction had significantly increased ratios of gamma aminobutyric acid, a neurotransmitter that inhibits brain signals, to glutamate-glutamine, a neurotransmitter that excites neurons, in their anterior cingulate cortex, as well as significantly higher scores in anxiety, depression, impulsivity and insomnia, compared with healthy controls, South Korean researchers reported at the Radiological Society of North America meeting. The findings also showed that GABA to GIx ratios significantly declined or normalized among those with smartphone or internet addiction who underwent cognitive behavioral therapy for nine weeks.
Researchers found that preschoolers with a common or persistent night-waking trajectory at ages 2 to 5 were significantly more likely to develop emotional symptoms, attention/hyperactivity problems and conduct problems at ages 5 to 6 before adjusting for baseline behavior, compared with those with the rare trajectory. However, the findings in Sleep Medicine, based on data involving 1,143 French children, showed only emotional symptoms were significantly linked to persistent night-waking after adjustment.
Abigail Kaplan, nutrition director for a New Hampshire school district, has implemented several changes this year. Changes include offering a free second helping of vegetables and giving students the option to purchase an entree for only $1.
During AHIP's National Conference on the Individual and Small-Group Markets, March 8 through 9 in Washington, D.C., you'll come away with expert guidance from policymakers, thought leaders, and industry stakeholders on the key policy and operational changes that will affect products and planning for 2019. Sign up today to take advantage of early registration discounts.
AHIP Individual Membership -- your one-stop professional resource
Join AHIP now as an Individual Member and gain access to an impressive package of professional resources, including: discounted rates on in-person conferences and online courses, access to the AHIP Career Center, breaking news about our fast-changing industry, and more. See if you qualify for Individual Membership and join today.
Share your solution with health plans
As health plans continue to re-imagine health care, they're looking for solutions to provide better quality care, lower costs, and build a sustainable system. Will they see yours? Discover opportunities to get in front on health plans, including conference sponsorships, webinars, Affiliate Organization membership options, and special pricing now available. Let's talk about your goals, your budget, and your success.
Those who restrain desire do so because theirs is weak enough to be restrained.
William Blake, poet and artist
Product announcements appearing in SmartBrief are paid advertisements and do not reflect actual AHIP endorsements. The news reported in SmartBrief does not necessarily reflect the official position of AHIP.