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UNI Employee Well-being | Physical Well-being

Physical Well-being


Physical well-being is comprised of activities that advance and strengthen overall well-being, including preventative health care, appropriate use of the medical system, regular physical activity, and knowledge of nutrition recommendations. Physical Well-being also includes the discouragement of tobacco, drugs, and excessive alcohol consumption. UNI employees are invited to utilize the following resources and tools to enhance physical well-being.

Biometric Health Screening

UNI Employee Well-being encourages all employees to participate in a free Biometric Health Screening. This screening is offered through Mercy Health Network. All UNI employees are eligible for one (1) free screening per academic year. Spouses may sign up for $30.

Biometric Health Screening Testimonial: One UNI employee explains the importance of participating in the Biometric Health Screenings provided by Human Resource Services and the positive impact it had on their health:

"I am thankful for this screening opportunity. Last November when I attended the Biometric Health Screening, I found out my glucose level was sky high, as well as my cholesterol. I doctor at Mayo Clinic every six months in the Oncology Department and had a scheduled appointment that December. They found that my cholesterol had risen dramatically but did not catch the diabetes because they didn't order a glucose test. I whipped out my UNI Biometric Screening information when I saw the doctor, and he was surprised, to say the least. He ordered a glucose test for me at the clinic to recheck the numbers. If I had not had the screening at UNI, who knows how long it would have been before I would have realized I had a real problem? I am now on medication and insulin."

UNI Employee Well-being has created a tool for UNI employees to measure their progress between annual biometric health screenings. Download the Biometric Health Screening Measure Your Progress tool.

Flu Vaccinations

Employee Well-being provides free Flu Vaccinations to UNI faculty and staff each Fall. Employees who receive the flu shot have fewer upper respiratory infections, fewer visits to the doctor’s office, and fewer days of sick leave. Flu vaccines are one tool to utilize in order to stay well during the cold and flu season. All employees are encouraged to participate in the annual Flu Vaccinations.

Dates of Flu Vaccination Clinics are provided near the start of the Fall semester every year, once clinics have been determined. Visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website for common misconceptions regarding the flu vaccine and the importance of getting vaccinated. Protect yourself and those around you by getting the vaccine. Questions can be directed to

Live Healthy Iowa

Join thousands of Iowans and the UNI community in making positive, healthy changes to your lifestyle by participating in the Live Healthy Iowa (LHI) 10 Week Wellness Challenge and the Live Healthy Iowa Burst Your Thirst Challenge. Teams of 2-10 individuals participate by tracking weight loss and minutes of physical activity during the 10 Week Wellness Challenge starting in January or by tracking water consumption and activity minutes during the Burst Your Thirst Challenge, which is a 6-week challenge that begins in June. Read the challenge overviews by UNI Employee Well-being to learn about wellness challenges available through Live Healthy Iowa.

In 2017, UNI employees who participated in the 10 Week Wellness Challenge recorded 215,358 minutes of physical activity and lost 177.4 pounds.

UNI employees who participated in the 2016 Burst Your Thirst Challenge recorded 55,878 minutes of physical activity and consumed 41,696 ounces of water during the six-week challenge

Do you want to ensure you receive information about any 2017 Challenges? Express interest by contacting and you will be added to a mailing list to receive registration information when it becomes available.

Tobacco Cessation Resources

The University of Northern Iowa is a tobacco-free campus. According to the American Lung Association, the leading cause of preventable death and disease in the U.S. is tobacco usage. To assist employees who wish to quit any type of tobacco usage, including smoking or chewing, UNI Employee Well-being provides resources to help you succeed.

Quitline Iowa
Quitline Iowa offers confidential tobacco cessation coaching services over the telephone, 24 hours a day. When you join the program, coaches will help you create an easy to follow quitting plan that will show you how to get ready, take action, and live the rest of your life tobacco free.

Quit coaches will also help you determine what type, dosage, and duration of nicotine substitute or other medication is right for you.

Blue Rx Complete Prescription Drug Benefits
Prescription drugs and devices used to treat nicotine dependence, including over-the-counter drugs prescribed by a physician are covered under your Blue Rx Complete prescription drug benefits and not under your medical benefits. However, related medical evaluations are covered under your medical benefits. For more information on what your plan covers, please visit the My Benefits webpage.

Walk-In Wellness Lab Screenings

UNI Employee Well-being is now offering Walk-In Wellness Lab Screenings, in addition to the on-campus screenings, through the Occupational Medicine & Wellness Disease Management Program. This is an additional benefit offered to provide employees a convenient, confidential, and low-cost method to assess their health at any time throughout the year.

Additional Resources

Better Choices, Better Health Program

The Northeast Iowa Area Agency on Aging (NEI3A) offers Stanford University’s 6-week Better Choices, Better Health® to all persons who live with arthritis, asthma, chronic fatigue syndrome, diabetes, heart problems, Parkinson’s, Multiple Sclerosis and other chronic health conditions, as well as their caregivers. The program is designed to work with a person’s medical plan of care and encourages self-management of fatigue, exercise, diet, and pain to help participants take back control of their lives and make daily tasks easier.

The Better Choices, Better Health® Class will provide the knowledge, confidence and skills needed to take a more active part in the management of chronic disease.

Full course cost is $20, which includes a textbook, relaxation tape, and other program materials. Scholarships are available for persons 60 years of age and older who express financial need.

Contact NEI3A at 866-468-7887 to learn about the next available class series. If this program is offered on UNI’s campus in the future, registration information will be made available through UNI Employee Well-being.

Cedar Valley Farmers Markets

The Cedar Valley has several Farmers Markets that provide local food options for UNI employees. Visit the Cedar Falls Tourism page for a complete listing of Farmers Market dates and locations.

UNI’s Local Food Program helps organize the College Hill Farmers Market, which is available on Thursdays in June through October from 4-6 p.m. This market is located in a lot at 2205 College Street, Cedar Falls. Contact Kamyar Enshayan at for questions about the College Hill Farmers Market.

Intuitive Eating by Evelyn Tribole

Evelyn Tribole described the 10 Principles of Intuitive Eating during the presentation Make Peace with Food & Your Body, which she shared with the UNI community in September 2013 as a component of UNI’s Reaching for Higher Ground: Food Matters project. During the presentation, Evelyn described external challenges and internal challenges to making peace with food and your body. The full presentation is available for check-out on DVD from the Employee Well-being Collection in Rod Library for employees interested in learning how the Principles of Intuitive Eating may improve overall well-being. Another resource available to UNI employees is Intuitive Eating: A Revolutionary Program that Works, a book co-authored by Evelyn Tribole & Elyse Resch.

October 2016 Healthy Holiday Strategies and Recipes from Lisa Smith (PDF)

Nutrition Resources

Walking Maps

Workplace Local Food Box Program

The Workplace Local Food Box program is available for UNI employees to purchase subscriptions of fresh, locally-grown food to have delivered to UNI. Boxes are delivered on Wednesdays between the hours of 8 - 10 AM. If that does not work special arrangements can be made. If you would like the opportunity to buy fresh, healthy food and support the local community, please register for an account and place an order through the Iowa Food Hub.

Buy Fresh/Local Logo

This program for employees to Buy Fresh, Buy Local is based on the popular Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) model. A food box is a bag of groceries filled with milk, meat, eggs, processed products, and produce, featuring products from local growers, creameries, and processors. Each week the food box has different contents. Register today!

For further information about the Workplace Local Food Box Program at UNI please contact Iowa Food Hub at