Worksite Opportunities for Wellness (WOW): Effects on cardiovascular disease risk factors after 1 year

Susan B. Racette, Susan S. Deusinger, Cindi L. Inman, Tamara L. Burlis, Gabrielle R. Highstein, Trent D. Buskirk, Karen Steger-May, Linda R. Peterson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


Objective: To evaluate the effectiveness of a worksite health promotion program on improving cardiovascular disease risk factors. Methods: In St Louis, Missouri from 2005 to 2006, 151 employees (134 F, 17 M, 81% overweight/obese) participated in a cohort-randomized trial comparing assessments + intervention (worksite A) with assessments only (worksite B) for 1 year. All participants received personal health reports containing their assessment results. The intervention was designed to promote physical activity and favorable dietary patterns using pedometers, healthy snack cart, WeightWatchers® meetings, group exercise classes, seminars, team competitions, and participation rewards. Outcomes included BMI, body composition, blood pressure, fitness, lipids, and Framingham 10-year coronary heart disease risk. Results: 123 participants, aged 45 ± 9 yr, with BMI 32.9 ± 8.8 kg/m2 completed 1 year. Improvements (P ≤ 0.05) were observed at both worksites for fitness, blood pressure, and total-, HDL-, and LDL-cholesterol. Additional improvements occurred at worksite A in BMI, fat mass, Framingham risk score, and prevalence of the metabolic syndrome; only the changes in BMI and fat mass were different between worksites. Conclusion: A multi-faceted worksite intervention promoted favorable changes in cardiovascular disease risk factors, but many of the improvements were achieved with worksite health assessments and personalized health reports in the absence of an intervention.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)108-114
Number of pages7
JournalPreventive Medicine
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Aug 2009


  • Diet
  • Fitness
  • Health promotion
  • Pedometer
  • Physical activity
  • Weight


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