All those aerobic and meditation classes may not boost company profit—or morale

Does that lunchtime aerobic workout or afternoon meditation really help you become a happier, healthier and more productive employee?

Health insurers and fitness gurus have long said that wellness programs can reduce medical spending, increase productivity, and improve well-being. However, a study released in June from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign found little evidence to support those claims.

Researchers randomly selected people to participate in a wellness program at a workplace of more than 12,000 employees and found little difference in results for those who participated versus those who did not, said David Molitor, a co-author on the study.

Worker absenteeism, productivity, and general level of health showed no change in the first year of participating in the program, the study showed.

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