Category Archives: newblog


Transform your pantry for better business performance

Tim Garrett suggests two simple ways to help your team become more positive and focussed.

Many companies have a pantry for their team and it is often filled with junk that causes a blood sugar rollercoaster, fatigue and an ill temper for your number one asset – your team members.

A typical pantry is filled with food that is not really food. You see many things that take  more away from the body than they give; offering only notorious vitamins, minerals and  macronutrients (carbs, fat and protein). These are called displacement foods; those that  are low in nutrition that take calories to digest, assimilate, detoxify and dispel. They are exactly the type of foods that can lead to cancer and degenerative diseases.

To give you a parallel example, cows fed a diet of straw die quicker than cows fed nothing  at all.

Let us break that down. What is actually happening when you eat food like this is that you  are killing your body a little each time because you are not supplying it with the nutrients it  needs. Therefore you have to destroy muscle tissue to supply your body with glucose,  fats, protein, vitamins and minerals.

Rather than take this route, there are two huge, possibly life transforming tips that I would strongly recommend.

 Supply readily grated carrot

A carrot salad, while seemingly quite normal, is one of the best things you can eat, especially if you have a hormone imbalance or digestive distress. In fact if you suffer from any energy related symptom.

You might think ‘that’s not me’, but 60 to 70 per cent of the people we meet on our corporate wellness programmes for the leading companies in the United Arab Emirates have a hormone imbalance and/or digestive distress. They just do not know what to look for.

I recommend a grated carrot salad to everyone I meet for the first time as too many people  ave problems with endotoxins; the build of toxins that accumulate in the gut.

To explain further, the indigestible fibres in raw carrot are carried through the whole of  he digestive system. On their way through these indigestible fibres bind toxins and circulating hormones like estrogen and pass them out of the body. You’d be surprised how many people have too high levels of circulating hormones and therefore are more likely to suffer from a hormone imbalance.

The other incredible thing about raw grated carrots is their extremely strong and effective natural antibiotic properties. The environment they live in demands that they have this protection mechanism and it is a wonderful way to clean the gut. The indigestible fibres carry these antibiotics through the gut which does the cleaning on the way.

It is important to note that you should not cook or juice the carrots as this destroys their fibres and releases the carcinogenic carotene.

Provide an orange juice machine

The other thing to include is an orange juice machine. You need to make it as easy as possible for your team to drink so ge t the machine that does it all for them.

There are huge benefits of orange juice and it is easy to dispel the common myth that orange juice is too sugary for the body, causing an insulin spike that is dangerous. When you look into the true science, this claim does not stand up. The potassium that is found in high amounts of orange juice has been studied over and over again and found to be stronger than insulin when it comes to enabling your cells to use the sugar. It therefore does not cause an insulin spike at all.

By drinking more orange juice, your team will be taking in easily-usable sugar that helps them develop a good hormone balance, deal with stress adequately and safeguard them against cell breakdown. You will see a big leap in their quality of life, mental outlook, productivity and focus.


How good nutrition can help you beat stress

Tim Garrett explains why he believes the food you eat could be key to regulating your stress levels at work

Stress accounts for billions of dollars worth of lost productivity for companies across the Gulf Cooperation Council.

I am going to explain why stress can be so damaging, the scientific impact it has on the body and – critically – what you can do to beat it.

I have spent many years studying breathing, sleep, digestion, movement, stress and nutrition – classically known as the holistic health systems. While they are all important, nutrition is so critical that I now spend most of my time coaching clients in this area.

Nutrition is often a major player when it comes to many health challenges including those as diverse as Alzheimer’s, poor digestion, cancer or arthritis.

It is certainly one of the most important factors when it comes to coping with life’s inevitable stressors and recovering from stressful periods or events in one’s life.

blog2The root cause of all diseases, or health imbalances, is a lack of energy leading to degeneration and damaged cell metabolism. Why is that important to you? Well, you can use that knowledge to guide your diet, lifestyle and mental and emotional choices in life so that you do not get ill.

When you have unresolved issues that are causing you mental or emotional stress, you are damaging your cells (the building blocks of your body), leading to every health imbalance known to man. It is therefore very important that you take time to brainstorm where most of your stress is coming from and try your best to reduce it.

It must be noted that there can of course be other factors that contribute toward cell degeneration. These include chemicals in our environments and food, electromagnetic frequencies and other factors.

There is also a level of stress that no nutritional strategy can safeguard against, but in ‘normal’ or what many people consider very stressful situations if you get your nutrition right then you can come out of the other side a stronger person.

“Nutrition is often a major player when it comes to many health challenges, including those as diverse as Alzheimer’s, poor digestion, cancer or arthritis. It is certainly one of the  most important factors when it comes to coping with life’s inevitable stressors”

Between 60 and 70 per cent of the people I meet on corporate wellness programmes suffer from altered cell metabolism and hormone imbalances that are coupled with a host of symptoms that destroy their quality of life.

In all of these cases these people are not doing the right things nutritionally, but the necessary changes are easy ones to make.

Sugar is something that is worth looking at. It is a common misconception that all sugar is bad for you. While there is certainly a difference in the quality of sugars available, it is important to realise that sugar is not always the bad guy.

The healthier sugars you should focus on to be healthy and happy are mainly those that come from fruits. These are  easily used by your body.

Healthy sugars can be found in juices like orange juice which has a high amount of vitamins and minerals such as magnesium and potassium that help the body use the sugar without causing an insulin spike.

Other juices that can be beneficial are tropical fruits like melon, mango, watermelon, papaya and red grape.

These easily usable sugars can be an important safeguard against stress.

When you look at a hormone chart detailing the most common hormones in the body and what is used to make them, sugar is right at the top of the list. Alongside it are key vitamins, minerals, cholesterol and protein.

This means that to make all of the important and protective hormones in the body you need to have enough easily usable sugars.

For example, sugar is used to manufacture cholesterol effectively. The ineffective and dangerous alternative when your body isn’t supplied with that sugar is that it breaks your body’s tissues to create sugar itself.

Cholesterol is one of the body’s most important hormones, contrary to what you might have read. It is an extremely powerful antioxidant that protects the body against stress and is produced the instant you experience stress for they very reason.

When your body has enough easily usable sugars and can manufacture enough cholesterol then you can produce enough of the healthy hormones progesterone and pregnenelone, DHEA and testosterone.

All of which give your body and your mind a healthy balance.

This balance can be encouraged by the right amount of protein, too. You can get this with the equivalent of two chicken breasts per day, though I prefer meat that is highly saturated like beef or lamb.

Other stress-busters include certain key vitamins and minerals like vitamin D3, vitamin K, vitamin A and vitamin E, along with good quality fats like butter and coconut oil. Other areas of your life might need addressing too.

If you need to make changes regarding your sleep, unresolved mental or emotional issues and moving your body in the right way then be proactive in doing these. But for most people it is nutrition that can really make or break your stress levels in the workplace. So always be sure to keep an eye on what you are consuming.


The secret weapon in participation maximisation – the incentive plan

A corporate wellness program can be a well intentioned shot in the dark or a strategically designed program that is implemented with passion and persistence and turns out to a be a big success.

There are many key initiatives that can be implemented within a corporate wellness program but the one I want to highlight today has to be, in my opinion the most vital;

The incentive plan.

Managements first thought when it comes to an incentive plan will often be cost.

What we at Corporate wellness Co then try to highlight is the huge associated costs of not implementing an incentive plan, after all even one staff member with one disease profile costs a company on average 1697 aed each year! Multiply this by 5 years for a long standing employee and the figure balloons to 8485 aed.

Then the costs of an incentive plan seem much more manageable.

Key fact: Every 1 dirham invested in a corporate wellness program = 1.6 to 2.3 dirham’s in cost savings and increased productivity to the company.

Back to the incentive programs.

Basically participants are awarded points for completing health and wellness activities.

Commonly participants are awarded incentives when they reach certain thresholds.

Our advice at Corporate Wellness Co is to have cash prizes and three levels.

Other incentives can be offered depending on the balance of cost to the company and the appeal to employees.

The activities within the incentive program are where it gets interesting.

Companies have been known to take a holistic approach when deciding what’s included.

Foundational items may include:
– Health and wellness workshops.
– Bootcamps.
– Work-in classes, yoga, Thai chi for example.
– Smoking cessation courses.
– Preventing disease workshops
– Financial priorities workshops.
– Nutrition counseling.

Other off-beat, more holistic items might include:
– Home safety improvements like checking fire alarms or smoke detectors.
– Changing light bulbs for energy saving items.
– 100% seatbelt usage.
– 100% baby seat usage while carrying babies and toddlers in your car.
– Meditation classes.
– Stress reduction counseling.

It goes without saying that an incentive plan has to be implemented with passion and persistence, one of 6 pillars that Corporate Wellness Co use as the foundation of a well managed and ultimately successful wellness program. The other 5 elements need to be there also including motivated leaders at all the key levels within the organisation, multi layer communications etc, etc.

If your thinking of setting up a wellness program but you don’t have the support of your MD/MG/CEO or that person is the opposite of what a corporate wellness program tries to achieve and isn’t willing to change his or her lifestyle habits for healthier ones then it’s probably a good idea to forget it and leave it for another time as top level managements involvement is a key factor to getting employees motivated.


If you get one takeaway from this blog post it should be that a well designed incentive plan is vital, pays for itself and can generate friendly competition among your staff and add that much needed buzz to your corporate wellness program.

If you need any help in setting up a wellness program then get in touch for a free consultation.

Kind Regards
Tim Garrett.
Corporate Wellness Co
“Corporate Wellness Programs That Work”
Tel: +971 052 699 3955.


The Limitations of a HRA (Health Risk Assessment)

The typical HRA involves taking a persons BMI (Body Mass Index), their cholesterol, blood pressure and blood glucose, while these are all valid tests they fall within the world of medical indoctrination.
I want to highlight that I am not against HRA’s as I think it can identify very real dangers in terms of someone’s health.

However, let’s consider cholesterol to highlight some of the limitations of a typical HRA.
The guidelines for healthy total blood lipids commonly known as total blood cholesterol levels have been gradually decreasing since the 1940’s when the drug companies boosted by their massive potential growth and ever increasing profits got involved in the medical schools, medical journals and media in a big way.
Consider that in 2014 the top 5 drug companies earned 56.1 BILLION dollars in net profit, that’s huge, imagine what companies earning that amount of money will do to stay competitive!

That’s $56,100,000,000 (profit, not revenue)

There are many points I would like to go over for this article but this is one of many that actually shows how important having enough cholesterol in the body:

After the age of fifty, low cholesterol is clearly associated with an increased risk of dying from a variety of causes. A study of old women indicated that a cholesterol level of 270 mg. per 100 ml. was associated with the best longevity (Forette, et al., 1989). “Mortality was lowest at serum cholesterol 7.0 mmol/l [=270.6 mg%], 5.2 times higher than the minimum at serum cholesterol 4.0 mmol/l, and only 1.8 times higher when cholesterol concentration was 8.8 mmol/l. This relation held true irrespective of age, even when blood pressure, body weight, history of myocardial infarction, creatinine clearance, and plasma proteins were taken into account.”

The medical establishments guide for healthy cholesterol is below 200 mg. per 100 ml, in fact 200 mg/ml is seen as dangerous.

This goes to show that cholesterol is one of the bodies most powerful antioxidants which explains why it is one of the bodies first line defense systems.

Anyway moving on, maybe it’s not that the tests that form a HRA are not valid, maybe it’s the follow-up advice that needs bringing into the 21st century.

I think a biometric screening +/ a HRA is a great way to see if your corporate wellness program is making a real impact in your teams lives but the advice needs to be advice that actually helps people and does not make them die faster, getting more and more ill, rather it should be advice that helps them feel better and better every day.
I believe a HRA is nothing without a well devised biometric screening, basically a qualitative questionnaire that is given to all participants with questions such as:

Question 1:
How often in a 7 day period, on average do you eat white table salt? (not sea salt)
A) = Zero times a week?
B) = 1 to 4 times a week?
C) = 4 to 8 times a week?
D) = More than 8 times a week?

There are various questions that are related to some of the most common mistakes people make, not only the most common but the most important mistakes that the general population make. Determining these very dangerous mistakes that people make is the most important thing someone can do to start to improve their health.

This is where one of the 6 pillars we look for when setting up a successful corporate wellness program– having the best partners, comes in. Without the best partners, the questions that are asked might be totally useless or at best not very useful. In fact they might give the team member a faulty impression of what good health is. For example if one of the questions is how many times do you eat wholemeal grains, in this context its thought to be healthy which is based on the faulty food pyramid model devised by the FDA (the US Food and Drug Administration).

It is clearly obvious by looking at the people who eat too many grains and by the countless studies that have been done that gluten is a dangerous substance for the estimated 78% of people who are intolerant to it. It is now evidenced that gluten does damage in the body for up to 6 weeks after being ingested when as little as 0.52 grams is eaten.

In summary; if you are interested in checking the health status of your employees, then please tread carefully, it’s easy to be tripped up by a great salesperson who doesn’t have the experience and knowledge to back it up.
If you want the best biometric screening on offer in the UAE and/or a comprehensive HRA then please get in touch for a free consultation.

Kind Regards,
Tim Garrett,
Corporate Wellness Co
“Corporate Wellness Programs That Work”
t: 052 699 3955


Is correct desk ergonomics missing two thirds of the picture?


Workstation ergonomics is a great way to help your team members avoid pain when implemented correctly, however I have found that it leaves out at least two thirds of the total solution that is necessary for productive and pain free employees.
In this article I’m going to dive into the details of correct workstation set up so that the one third is covered and taken care of then I’m going to show you in detail how the second third; posture and its key components is key and why the third element; lifestyle and awareness is also vital to get a holistic view and real solution to your staffs pain and discomfort.

1st third of workstation ergonomics puzzle

This is the nuts and bolts part of getting your employees set up correctly so they don’t end up clocking up huge medical bills and send your medical insurance premiums through the roof.


The key points to remember here are that your upper legs should be at 90 degrees to your lower legs, that your arms should be at 90 degrees and that your monitor should be at or slightly below seated eye level.
There are certain things you can purchase to modify these elements if they are out of balance, for example a monitor arm can be used to change the height of your monitor or a keyboard tray can be used to change the height of your keyboard.
How about considering a desk that can be raised so you can stand at work stimulating your nervous system and the pain associated with sitting for long periods.
Or even funkier, how about using a fit ball as a chair this will:
Keep your nervous system constantly activated; your muscles won’t shut down 8 minutes after slouching in a chair like they do when you are sitting with your back rested on a chair.
Help you burn more calories each day.
If you are worried about correct desk ergonomics/sitting position in the office then using a fit ball will also mean you are unlikely to slouch forward or lean back too far which over time is very dangerous.
Sitting on a fit ball at work can also improve your digestion as your core is working which stimulates peristalsis, the pumping of the digestive system.
Improve the muscle tone in your core muscles and all of the associated muscles that hold your body in the correct sitting position, remember even standing takes 101 muscles so imagine how many muscles you are activating on a fit ball.


Part 2: One of the missing thirds
art 2 is all about how to fix the missing elements in terms of the physical body. You can get a perfect desk set up and ergonomics assessment from the best expert in the world but no matter what you do if you have poor flexibility in the spine for example and your spine is forced into a slouched position what good is it going to do?
These are the key elements to posture that you need to be aware of and fix if they are a problem so you can avoid pain and be 100% productive;

1. Spinal Flexibility (use the exercise below to increase this if you feel you have a tight spine) Start below the belly button and work up to a point just before the head is resting on the foam roller. Spend 30 seconds in each position; move up toward the head by only 1 cm each time.


2. Muscle flexibility. If the muscles on the front of your upper body are tight then sitting or standing with good posture will be nearly impossible. Try this stretch to improve the flexibility of the muscles of the chest, do it for 30 seconds 3 x per day:


3. Awareness. Use the string attached to the top of the head trick 20 times a day for 20 days so that awareness of the correct posture becomes a habit. (just imagine there is a piece of string attached to the top of your head and it is pulling you to the sky, you are then in a position where your shoulders are back, your head is upright and your chest is up which is great) To remind you of the correct posture here is a picture:



4. Strength. Use the exercise below to strengthen the muscles on the back of the body. There are lots of muscles involved in good posture, even those on the front of the body but I’m trying to keep it as simple as possible so if you have forward head posture then do this for 20 seconds with a 10 second between rest 4 times each day:



5. Non-inhibited muscles. Having knots in muscles can make certain parts of your musculoskeletal system shut down; basically they will stop muscles working properly. Use the tennis ball as shown below to massage out these points:


The third part, Holistic Health
Holistic health is often the missing key, whether it’s a person having problems losing body fat or relieving pain in the musculoskeletal system.
If for example you have a great desk set up, great spinal flexibility, all of the awareness in the world of correct posture, great muscle flexibility, non inhibited muscles and great strength but a terrible diet and lifestyle where you sleep late and wake up exhausted how in the world do you think you can sit properly at a desk? It just won’t happen.
I hope I have demonstrated how there are many pieces to the desk ergonomics picture and how they all fit together, if you want to know more then please get in touch for a free consultation.
Our corporate health programs will make a huge difference in your company but only if you contact me:)
Kind Regards,

Tim Garrett.
Corporate Wellness Co.


What The Figures Say, is a corporate wellness program worth the investment

Let’s start with a Harvard Business Review that was conducted in 2008 by the esteemed professor Leonard L Barry.Let’s start with the big hitting facts and move on to see if these translated into real cost savings for real companies.

Johnson and Johnson by initiating its corporate wellness program reduced the amount of staff that smoke by two thirds, yes you read that correctly, two thirds! They have estimated that the savings have added up to 250 million dollars, in total the program cost them 97 million dollars, that’s a net return on their investment of 2.71 times.


The common misconception of corporate wellness program receive in the press is often due to the fact that the returns are hard to measure.

Elements like employee happiness, productivity and increased work/life balance that impacts a company’s bottom line is hard to quantify apart from results from questionnaires, the problem arises when you try to translate these paper results into dollar returns.

Out of a poll conducted on 200 companies with over 150 employees that ran a corporate wellness program the top benefits that they received in ascending order were:

  1. Less sick days per 100 employees.
  2. Reduced medical insurance costs by 20% or more after one years implementation.
  3. The average number of risk factors per 100 employees reduced by 0.5 within 1 years successful corporate wellness and corporate fitness programs integration.
  4. Smoking among employees reduced significantly.
  5. Alcohol use among employees reduced significantly.
  6. Enjoyment and satisfaction at work increased by 35%, especially among the companies that ran their wellness programs with small groups of competing employees.

The thing that blurs the line of being able to judge if a wellness initiative is worth the per dollar investment is the fact that a lot of SME’s don’t benchmark their fitness, rest & repair and wellness programs. They go into the program headstrong but don’t clarify where they started with something like a company health appraisal questionnaire and resulting score or checking for team members health risk factors like high blood sugar levels, high cholesterol etc then they obviously can’t track the participants progress throughout.


If they set the program up correctly initially they would surely see massive improvement to hard facts like reduced medical insurance costs and increased employee productiveness.

So in conclusion the figures clearly show that properly set up company wellness programs provide the team with a huge return on allocated capital.

If you need to know how to set up a corporate wellness program that works get in touch today.

Kind Regards,

Tim Garrett.

Corporate Wellness Co founder.

052 699 3955