Many of us are under increased stress these days, which can lead to making less-than-healthy food choices and an overindulgence in comfort foods.

We’re not alone: A Yale University study found that grasshoppers, which normally consume a high-protein diet consisting of certain grasses, gorge themselves on sugar-laden goldenrod plants when stressed or under threat.

But for humans, satiating on high-calorie, low-nutrient foods can actually increase our stress levels, experts say. What’s more, overindulging increases our likelihood of developing obesity-related chronic diseases like diabetes.

If you’re at risk of developing diabetes due to weight or family history, MESSA encourages you to check out our free Omada weight loss and diabetes prevention program. Those who qualify receive a free “smart” scale, along with online access to personal health coaches, engaging curriculum, supportive peer groups and more.

The program is completely free — with no deductible or copayments — for MESSA members and adult dependents who have prediabetes or are at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes.

Here are a few of our favorite features of the Omada program:

  1. Health coach: Omada includes your own professional coach who is there to keep you on track — on your best days and your worst. They personalize the experience to ensure you’re getting exactly what you need to be successful.
  1. Tools and technology: Once you sign up, you’ll get a welcome kit delivered to your doorstep. It includes a wireless smart scale that’s automatically linked to your online account, making it easy to monitor your weight loss progress.
  1. It actually works. You may have tried other programs or diets in the past, but Omada is different. The average graduate continues to engage in the program and loses more than 10 pounds over 16 weeks.

Visit messa.org/omada to take a one-minute risk screener and find out if you’re eligible.

This article was originally featured in DiscoverYou May/June 2020.