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Wellness Information

Health at SMU

Naturally Slim Program

SMU is continually looking for ways to help you improve – or maintain – your health. As a wise person once said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” Plus, we think it’s the right thing to do.

We’ve all heard that healthy eating, healthy weight management, and physical activity can help prevent heart disease, stroke, diabetes, many cancers, and other unpleasant health problems. But the precursors to these problems – collectively known as “metabolic syndrome” – are a silent epidemic that affects an estimated one in four adult Americans. Through our continued offering of the program Naturally Slim® you have the opportunity to lose weight, feel better, and decrease your risk factors for metabolic syndrome.

What is “Metabolic Syndrome?”

Metabolic syndrome is a collection of risk factors that dramatically increases your risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, depression, stroke, cancer, and a number of other unpleasant medical conditions. According to a national health survey, one out of every three working adults has metabolic syndrome.

These five questions can tell you if you are at risk:

  1. Blood pressure: Is yours 130/85 or higher?
  2. HDL (good) cholesterol: Is your level less than 40 mg/dl (milligrams/deciliter) for men; less than 50 mg/dl for women?
  3. Fasting blood glucose: Is your glucose level 100 mg/dl or higher?
  4. Triglycerides: Is your triglyceride level 150 mg/dl or higher?
  5. Waistline: Does yours measure 40” or more for men; 35” or more for women (when measured across the belly button)?

If you answered “yes” three or more times, you may have metabolic syndrome. People with metabolic syndrome have a significantly higher chance of developing a medical condition in the next several years.

A Note About Confidentiality…

The information that you provide to any program professional who is representing SMU will be considered confidential and will be available only to you and those professionals. SMU will have no access to the personal health information that you include in the online application. Furthermore, each of our program partners cannot sell or otherwise divulge any participant information to any unauthorized party.


We are excited about offering this program to our faculty and staff and hope that you will consider participating if you are serious about taking steps to improve your health. If you have questions about this program, you may email us at


How the Program Works

Naturally Slim focuses on the issue of metabolic syndrome and offers methods to help you create changes in your behavior.

More specifically, it:  
  1. Fights metabolic syndrome by focusing on weight loss and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
  2. Enables you to develop a lifestyle of eating your favorite foods while still improving health and losing weight.
  3. Teaches you to identify personal eating habits, recognize the difference between true hunger and psychological hunger, understand how hydration habits influence hunger, and practice ways to minimize fat storage.
  4. Addresses how exercise, stress, and your environment affect weight loss.
  5. Includes 10 self-paced, online video sessions or 10 live, onsite classroom sessions, as well as frequent correspondence and positive guidance from a personal health counselor over a 10-week period.
  This has been very powerful for me. I now feel like I have these tools that really work- that I can use the rest of my life. The huge “diet” machine in the media did NOT give me any of this excellent information."
Naturally Slim Participant

Participation Basics 

The program is open to current SMU benefit-eligible staff and faculty only. Spouses and dependents are not eligible at this time.
All applicants must have recent biometric screenings results and enter their results using the online application. Results from onsite screenings in Fall 2013 may be used. Biometric screening results from completing a full physical dated August 1 - November 22, 2013 are acceptable. 
To participate, you must create an account and complete your online application between October 28 and November 26, 2013 at 5:00 p.m., at Be sure to have your biometric screening results on hand, provide complete information, and agree to the program requirements.
If you apply, you will be notified via e-mail whether you are accepted into the program by December 10, 2013. If you have previously completed the program, you are not eligible to re-apply.
The program is paid in full by SMU, so long as you complete the minimum participation requirements. If you complete fewer than 8 of the 10 sessions, a $100 penalty will be assessed over the course of two pay periods.
This class will host a kickoff meeting on February 6; remaining classes will be offered online via weekly videos to be watched. If you are selected, but unable to attend on February 6, you may watch the week 1 video in place of the kick-off meeting.
Graduates will be awarded a Wellpower challenge badge in the spring reward period for completing the program.
Post-program biometric screenings are required and will be on main campus and Plano April 17 - May 15, 2014.

Relevant Dates

October 29 - November 19, 2013 On-campus screenings available on main campus and Plano campus.
October 28 - November 22, 2013 Naturally Slim online application available.
November 26, 2013 Deadline to complete the online application at
Week of December 10, 2013 All applicants will be notified regarding their acceptance status.
February 3, 2014 Online program begins for accepted applicants.
February 6, 2014 Onsite kick-off class. Lunch will be provided. 
April 17- May 23, 2014 On-campus screenings available on main campus and Plano campus.

If you are accepted into the class, you will receive more details regarding the kickoff meeting in your acceptance letter. Please be aware that these dates may change slightly.

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