Discovery has announced the introduction of a mental wellbeing module to Vitality, with members rewarded with Discovery Miles for taking proactive steps towards their mental health and wellbeing.
The group said that members can now also track their mindful minutes and sleep goals on partner apps – including Headspace, Calm, The Mindfulness App and Buddhify – in the Vitality Active Rewards platform.
“Improving mental wellbeing and resilience is integral to overall health,” said Dr Mosima Mabunda, Vitality’s head of Wellness.
“We know that mental and physical health are connected. While living with a chronic condition increases the risk for developing poor mental health, the opposite is also true – poor mental health increases the risk for developing chronic conditions.”
“For example, depression is associated with an 18% higher risk of type 2 diabetes. This may be because people with a mental health condition find it more difficult to manage their physical health.”
Vitality’s data supports the impact of healthy lifestyle behaviours on mental wellbeing:
- Physical inactivity is associated with 4 times more reported psychological distress;
- Unhealthy food purchases are associated with 1.7 times more reported psychological distress.
“This highlights the importance of preventative behaviours for both mental and physical health,” said Dr Mabunda.
“These include mindfulness-based meditation – which has been shown to be useful in improving mental wellbeing – and adequate sleep. Physical activity and good nutrition have a well-established positive impact on our health,” she said.
“This is what drove us to more purposefully and formally integrate mental wellbeing into the Vitality programme.”
How it works
Discovery said that Vitality members earn 500 points for completing mental wellbeing assessments online.
These are based on key areas that influence our overall state of mental wellbeing, including sleep, resilience, depression and anxiety.
After completing the assessments, members activate the mental wellbeing module in the Vitality Active Rewards programme.
Discovery said that users can also download a mindfulness app of their choice to track their mindful minutes and link their Garmin and Apple devices to track their sleep.
In addition, a Vitality mental-wellbeing channel shares free tools, available to anyone, to improve mental wellbeing. These include videos, podcasts and tips from experts.
“Mental wellness must be a priority for all South Africans. So, in addition to these exciting new initiatives for our Vitality members, we have a number of resources available to all South Africans on the Vitality at Homesite,” said Vitality clinical wellness specialist, Dr Seranne Motilal
“These include mental wellbeing articles, podcasts and breathwork videos as well as home-workout videos and nutritious recipes.”