Employees from a diverse group of companies across the UAE who lost the highest percentage of weight and maintained the loss during the first three months of the Weight Loss Challenge were rewarded for their efforts.
Fifty employees from over 20 UAE companies joined the six-month ‘Weight Loss Challenge 2019’, which was launched by Imperial College London Diabetes Centre (ICLDC), part of Mubadala’s network of world-class healthcare providers, in partnership with Abu Dhabi Police.
Starting from 1 May, participants aimed to lose up to 36% of their body weight during the campaign, with a weight loss limit of 18% every three months. Those who lost the highest percentage of weight in the first three months of the challenge were recognised at a ceremony attended by Colonel Mohammed Obaid Buali, Director of Abu Dhabi Police’s physical activities centre in the human resources department, and ICLDC’s Lawrence Patrick, CEO, and Dr Safdar Naqvi, medical director and consultant physician and endocrinologist.
Commenting on the ceremony, Colonel Mohammed Obaid Buali said: “The Weight Loss Challenge mirrors Abu Dhabi Police’s commitment to raise awareness on the importance of sport and to motivate UAE nationals and residents alike to adopt a healthier lifestyle. This is why it is extremely rewarding to see so many employees commit to this challenge and take such major strides to achieve their weight-loss goals for healthier, happier lives.”
Lawrence Patrick said: “Thanks to the support of the General Command of Abu Dhabi Police, and the participation of 20 government institutions and over 700 employees, the Weight Loss Challenge has proved to be another very successful ICLDC public health initiative. We are immensely proud of the amazing results most participants achieved and it gives us great pleasure to celebrate their achievements and reward their efforts to take charge of their health.”
Employees were selected based on their Body Mass Index (BMI) and weight-loss goals, which had to be realistic and attainable in a healthy, sustainable way. Participants met strict eligibility requirements and were given toolkits containing nutrition and exercise tools and tips to help them adopt healthier habits and make lasting lifestyle changes. Participants were then weighed at two intervals during the challenge and their progress was monitored – before starting andmidway. They will be weighed again in the final month, October,.
Dr Safdar Naqvi said: “Obesity and overweight is a disease that has become a burning health issue in this nation and a major epidemic across the world. As a healthcare professional dedicated to promoting the well-being of the local community, I am delighted to see so many people make the behavioural changes necessary to lose weight by engaging in physical activity.”
The Weight Loss Challenge was launched on 16 April and has been running from 1 May until 31 October. The initiative is part of ICLD’s award-winning awareness campaign Diabetes.Knowledge.Action, the UAE’s largest and longest-running public health initiative. Aimed at promoting behavioral change, the initiative incentivizes employers to adopt a work culture that supports employees’ health and encourages them to adopt healthier habits.
ICLDC regularly engages members of the local community to raise awareness of diabetes and related conditions, and to promote healthier lifestyles. In addition to the Weight Loss Challenge, ICLDC will launch the 13th edition of its annual walkathon, WALK 2019, also as part of the Diabetes.Knowledge.Action platform. The centre will present a final prize to the employees who lose the most percentage of weight and a trophy to the company whose employees cumulatively loses the greatest amount of weight as part of Weight Loss Challenge 2019 during a ceremony at WALK 2019.