American College of Lifestyle Medicine and Workplace Wellness Leader WELCOA Join Forces to Champion Lifestyle Medicine for Self-Insured Employers

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The American College of Lifestyle Medicine (ACLM) and workplace wellness leader Wellness Council of America (WELCOA) have announced a new strategic alliance that will capitalize on the synergy of reaching employers with evidence-based Lifestyle Medicine interventions to rein in health care costs and deliver dramatically improved and sustainable health and well-being outcomes for employees.

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Wellness is no longer a nice to have – it is a business imperative that every organization needs to consider if they want to be successful.

As a united voice touting the significant impact of lifestyle medicine interventions in worksite settings, the American College of Lifestyle Medicine and the Wellness Council of America today announced a new strategic alliance. Capitalizing on the synergy of reaching employers with evidence-based Lifestyle Medicine. ACLM and WELCOA are on a mission to rein in costs, deliver dramatically improved well-being results for employees and ensure the organization and employee thrive together.

"For whom is there immense profit in good health?” rhetorically asked ACLM Executive Director Susan Benigas. "The answer is self-insured employers, as they bear significant cost in providing health care to their employees; yet they have so much to gain when employees are healthy in mind, body and spirit, which is what Lifestyle Medicine can deliver."

It's estimated that nearly 156 million Americans receive employer-based health care coverage. With health care costs on a continued upward trajectory, the burden for employers is increasing—not only in actual dollars spent, but also in lost productivity and increased absenteeism. The burden of poor health spans way beyond that of true medical costs, but has a direct impact on the long-term sustainability and success of an organization. The worksite has been called one of the leading causes of death and is the perfect place to help all working people reach their health and wellness goals.

Together, ACLM and WELCOA are championing innovative approaches that integrate Lifestyle Medicine with organizational cultural strategies to improve business outcomes and reduce costs. Their alliance will help put control back into the lives of employees in regard to their health.

“There is no question that small lifestyle changes can lead to big results and the key is ensuring that organizations create the proper conditions where employees can achieve and sustain their wellness goals – everyday. The future of work continues to evolve and wellness is no longer a nice to have – it is a business imperative that every organization needs to consider if they want to be successful,” remarked President and CEO of WELCOA, Ryan Picarella.

According to ACLM President-elect Dr. Dexter Shurney, former chief medical director and executive director, Global Health and Benefits at Cummins, Inc., "Educating and empowering employees with the Lifestyle Medicine knowledge and skills needed to control just their cholesterol through optimal dietary lifestyle has the potential to save a company nearly $15,000 each year for each of these employees. This is looking solely at the cost of some prescription meds, not to mention dramatically enhanced quality of life employees realize when they learn to use the power of their own lifestyle choices to protect their health and treat many of the conditions with which they may already have been diagnosed." He adds, "From an employer perspective, a comprehensive Lifestyle Medicine wellness initiative is the only avenue to sustainable behavior change that will result in improved outcomes and lower costs."

ABOUT THE AMERICAN COLLEGE OF LIFESTYLE MEDICINE: ACLM is the professional medical association for those dedicated to the advancement and clinical practice of Lifestyle Medicine as the foundation of a transformed and sustainable health care system. Lifestyle Medicine prevents, treats and sometimes reverses chronic diseases. It focuses on the combined use of evidence-based lifestyle therapeutic approaches, such as a predominantly whole food, plant-based diet, regular physical activity, adequate sleep, stress management, avoidance of risky substance use and other non-drug modalities.

More than a professional association, ACLM is a galvanizing force for change. ACLM addresses the need for quality education and certification, supporting its members in their individual practices and in their collective desire to domestically and globally promote Lifestyle Medicine as the first treatment option, as opposed to a first option of treating symptoms and consequences with expensive, ever increasing quantities of pills and procedures. ACLM members are united in their desire to identify and eradicate the root cause of disease. Join today at

ABOUT WELCOA: WELCOA (the Wellness Council of America) is one of the nation’s most-respected resources for building high-performing, healthy workplaces. With a 30-year history and more than 5,000 corporate members, WELCOA has an impeccable reputation for helping business and health professionals improve employee well-being and create healthier organizational cultures. Learn more at

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Jean Tips
American College of Lifestyle Medicine
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