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Tunica's Biggest Losers

Sam's Town Tunica employees gamble on Weight Watchers.

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Since January, Sam's Town casino in Tunica has trimmed over 400 pounds from its workforce, and all without layoffs. Forty employees at Sam's Town lost a combined weight of 421 pounds using Weight Watchers Corporate Solutions, a program that helps workers shed pounds.

"Many of us spend more time at work than we do at home, and that's where we do most of our indulging in the two G's -- grease and gravy," said employment manager Stacy Luckett. "Additionally, our meals are free for team members, so portion control tends to be an issue."

The program started at the Sam's Town corporate office in Las Vegas after a group of employees expressed interest in a workplace weight-loss program. Eventually, the program trickled down to the company's other properties.

In Tunica, the first 10-week session kicked off January 25th. Participants attended weekly meetings where representatives from Weight Watchers offered coaching sessions and discussed healthy food choices.

"After weigh-in, they conduct motivational sessions," said Luckett. "They exchange strategies, share challenges, and, in some instances, swap recipes."

Weight Watchers determined that each employee should lose at least 2.5 pounds in the first five weeks. If employees met that goal, Sam's Town "comped" the $55 cost of the program. Luckett says about 95 percent of the participants met their goals.

Last month, the company kicked off its second 10-week session. The meetings are open to any Sam's Town employee, including those who participated in the first session.

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