Gambling on Good Health

January 5, 2013 at 1:18 am Leave a comment

weight loss gambleWith the start of a new year the media is alive with weight loss programs. Everything from Atkins to Weight Watchers is in full swing, with each commercial sporting people just like you who are now thin and so incredibly happy that they laugh for no reason at the camera while holding pictures of their past selves. Nothing super new there. Big yawn!

Today MSNBC ran an article about Rick and Kay Woollen who lost weight and made money by using HealthyWage. HealthyWage is a program that lets you put your money where your bulk is. In other words, you pick a program and pay to compete against other people within the program. They offer a variety of challenges and options, but the idea is that you pay money to help yourself be more committed to losing the weight.

Obviously for some people this is VERY successful, in that you not only lose weight, but make money doing it. The Woollen’s lost over 100 pounds combined and won $6000. I don’t know about you, but that sounds win-win to me. The thing is, what about all of the people who paid money and didn’t lose the weight? You might say that they could’ve paid for a gym membership or for an individual weight loss program and not used it. That would’ve been a waste of money too. But in that case, the money you spent goes to the company that you wanted to buy something from, not to other people.

Does something like this help people make long-term lifestyle changes that will continue to benefit them throughout their lives, or does this encourage people to do something for a reward that is not long-lasting? Does the “why” for doing something make a big enough impact on the way that people behave that it should be factored in? When I exercise and eat my apple instead of ice cream, I’m not doing it to make big bucks, I’m doing it to be healthy, to feel better and to be happier. Would I lose some of those results if I was making healthy choices to make money? I think I might.

Weigh in America, what do you think? Is gambling on weight loss the way to go? Do you think that a monetary risk will truly help people to make major lifestyle changes, or is this a program that will help a leave more people worse than when they started? Would you do it?

LazyMan Update-
Swimming: 0 laps
Biking: 15 miles
Running: 0 miles

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Entry filed under: diets, Exercise, Fitness, weight, weight loss.

Fat and Fit: Fact or Fiction

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