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September 20, 2006
Are Employers Sending Mixed Signals About Wellness?

While most employers promote healthy living among their workforce, many employees find junk food in vending machines and at celebrations at work, according to a survey by Harris Interactive for the Marlin Company.

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Sixty-three percent of workers say that vending machines at work mostly contain junk food like potato chips, cookies, and candy.

Even more workers (74 percent) say that the food at workplace celebrations is at least sometimes cake, cookies, or candy.

Meanwhile, 53 percent of workers said their employers promote wellness through information or resources about healthy living.

"It's a shame that while companies are finally getting the message out to the workforce about maintaining healthy lifestyles, their employees are often being tempted to snack on junk food," says Frank Kenna III, president of the Marlin Company. "Why aren't companies backing up their positive behavior messages with healthy snacks and an environment that doesn't encourage workers to eat the wrong foods?"

The survey also asked respondents whether they generally thought the average employee in their workplace takes care of his or her health. Twenty-nine percent of men and 20 percent of women answered no.

The survey included 751 U.S. workers.

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