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A Simple Formula: Walk 5,000 Steps A Day, Save 20 Percent On Health Insurance

May 8, 2013: 12:00 AM EST
A fitness program that tied participation to health insurance premium discounts got people off their duffs and walking, according to a U.S. study. More than 6,500 obese people insured by Blue Care Network in Michigan were offered a choice: pay 20 percent more for their insurance or participate in a computerized pedometer-based wellness program that involved walking 5,000 steps a day (about 1.2 miles) in a three-month period. After a year, 97 percent of the enrollees met or exceeded the average goal, even those – about a third of participants – who felt the program was “coercive”.
Donna M Zulman et al., " Implementation and evaluation of an incentivized Internet-mediated walking program for obese adults", Translational Behavioral Medicine, May 08, 2013, © Springer
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