CoreHealth's CEO Anne Marie Kirby shares how her own health condition inspired her to take action and develop technology to help her improve her own health and employee health around the globe.
First there is a problem, then there is a business!
Not long ago, an article was published about me that mentioned how CoreHealth really began because of a personal health issue I had. Since that time, a number of people have asked me more about it so I thought to write a blog for inquiring minds! It seems that ‘auto-immune’ diseases are all the rage these days. However I do not recommend anyone rush out to get one!
Another observation is that it is people are really interested in the impetus that triggers businesses.
As a young adult, I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis. It flared up and it subsided but for a number of years, was not debilitating. There were some [very expensive] medications I could take when I was having an episode so I was getting by fine. However, about a year after having my first child, I had a flair up that left me debilitated for two solid weeks. I remember lying in bed, in a dark room, unable to eat, drink or even move, and my husband bringing our son in to see me every once in a while. At one point, he crawled on the bed and it almost sent me through the roof. As my husband quickly escorted him out door, and I saw the look of concern and fear in his eyes, I became determined to solve my problem.
At the time, even GI specialists didn’t know much about the cause of the various Inflammatory Bowel Diseases so I took it upon myself to troubleshoot the problem (what else would a programmer do?!)
As with all autoimmune diseases, there tends to be a trigger so I started to try to track what I was eating. It’s incredible how many different types foods an average person eats in one day! And did you know that about 25% are not even actual food products (for example, the 1st three in today: Propyl Gallate, Azodicarbonamide, Recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone, etc.) Fortunately for me, those two facts alone lead me to:
1) eat a whole food diet before it was cool, and
2) write a nutrition software package that allowed me to store recipes, analyze and trend ingredients.
Creating Wellness Technology
When I showed my software package to a couple of friends, they thought what I’d done could be beneficial to others and convinced me to commercialize it. It was the mid-nineties at the time and the Internet was just catching on.
I thought, wouldn’t it be fun to dabble with the Internet?
So I took them up on it!
A personal trainer from the UK found my nutrition software and suggested that if it also supported exercise, it could be used in the professional market as well. With that good advice, we started CoreHealth, upgraded the wellness software, and the rest is history. What remains is that the company continues to grow and thrive and I believe it’s because we still listen to our customers and take their sage advice!
Workplace Solutions Today
Today’s workplace solutions are different than they were when we first started – in fact, they’re continually evolving. Employee motivation may not be piqued by bare-bones nutrition tracking any more, but there are countless fun, interactive ways to create lasting behavior change though employee wellness technology. Employee health can be integrated right into company culture with the right tools and tech.
Other Helpful Resources
- 10 Signs It's Time to Switch Wellness Your Wellness Portal
- 10+ Must Have's in Corporate Wellness Technology plus Technology Requirements Checklist
- Wellness Apps & Integrations - a Technology Meltdown
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About CoreHealth Technologies
CoreHealth Technologies Inc. is the leading corporate wellness platform trusted by more than 1000 organizations, ranging from medium-sized businesses to Fortune 500 enterprises. At CoreHealth, we believe that developing the best employee wellness programs is all about giving wellness companies the right code, design and access to the latest innovations. With the most customization, integrations and reliability of any software in its class, CoreHealth’s powerful platform lets users focus on growing great companies. For more information, explore the CoreHealth website.
About The Author
Anne Marie Kirby
Anne Marie Kirby is the Founder and Managing Director of CoreHealth Technologies. Recognized as a leading female entrepreneur by national awards panels, Anne Marie has been at the forefront of health and wellness innovation - leading the team in developing sophisticated corporate wellness technology that empowers the wellness innovators of tomorrow.