GE Privacy

Introduction: protecting your privacy, enhancing your online experience

When it comes to data privacy, protecting your personal information is most important. We feel it’s also important to give you, your colleagues, and your family members a voice in the development of this web site and your overall experience with it. To do this, we need to collect certain types of information to help us evaluate how the HealthAhead web site is being used, so we can continually improve your experience and the content we offer to you. By tracking overall usage patterns, providing an easy channel for your feedback, and allowing you to tell us what content is most useful to you, we can refine our offerings and provide more of the content you personally find valuable.

Overall, we are committed to giving you the option to participate – or not participate – in a manner that’s right for you. Read more for how we do this.

Information we collect and how we use it

Identifiable Information Collecting

All methods of identifying yourself to GE will be optional and opt-in, may be updated by you at any time, and will not be required for all areas of the web site.

We will not collect any identifiable user information from the areas of the HealthAhead web site which do not require SSO (Single Sign On), unique User ID (Identification), and/or Password.

There are areas of the web site that require you to identify yourself to us (authenticate). This allows you to access certain parts of the web site that may otherwise be restricted for privacy and security purposes.

There are also areas that may provide the option to create a personalized profile. The information you provide is optional and what you tell us will determine the level of personalization you will experience.

Access to identifiable information is restricted to internal, administrative personnel and solely for purposes of providing web site support, awarding prizes and other recognition, and customizing the web site content and overall functionality for the user. However, we will also allow you to change your mind and opt-out of sharing personal information with us at any time.

Non-Identifiable Information Collecting

When you visit the HealthAhead web site, we track, collect and report on certain aggregate and non- identifiable information. In other words, the information we collect does not relate to a single identifiable visitor. It tells us things such as how many users visited our web site and what pages they viewed.

This non-identifiable data will be collected and stored in a secure database in the U.S., and may be viewed by GE. We will analyze this information to refine our web site to better reflect user preferences, such as the type of content users are searching for most, and to improve the usability of the web site and the user’s web site experience. The information may also be used for purposes of promoting the web site. The data will not be used for medical analysis or other medical purposes.


Like many web sites, the HealthAhead web site uses browser cookies – bits of text placed on your computer’s hard drive when you visit. We use them to tell us things like whether you’ve visited us before, and to help us identify features in which you may have the greatest interest. We also use cookies to track country and language selection.

In the future, we may use cookies to track additional details, such as city and state.

We keep this information unless you don’t wish GE to capture this and choose to delete your cookie history. If you wish to stop accepting new browser cookies, get notification when you receive a new cookie, or disable existing cookies, the “help” portion of the toolbar on most browsers will tell you how. Keep in mind, without browser cookies, you may not be able to take full advantage of all our web site features or have your preferences saved for future visits.

We also use Flash cookies on the web site to enhance your online experience. These are similar to browser cookies, but they store data more complex than simple text. Flash cookies, by themselves, cannot do anything to or with the data on your computer. In addition, Flash cookies cannot access or remember your email address or other personal information unless you provide the information on this web site.

Web Beacons

Certain pages on our web site contain “web beacons” (also known as Internet tags, pixel tags and clear GIFs). These web beacons obtain information such as the time the page was viewed, the type of browser used to view the page, and the information in cookies. Web beacon data does not include IP address. The web beacon data is stored at Google Analytics, a third party (see ‘Tracking and Reporting’ for more information on this technology).

Tracking and Reporting

Specifically we will track, collect and report on the following data using software from Google Analytics. For more information about Google Analytics, including information about how to opt out of these technologies, go to

Our primary metrics include: Poll response rate, repeat visits, number of times content is shared, and visits by country.

The sub-metrics include:

Most Popular Content Types, Most Popular Content Topics, User Pathing, Exit Links, Bounce Rate, Traffic by Source (region), Time on Web site, Visit Time of Day, Unique Views/Page Views, Thumps Up/Down, Most Shared Content, Number of Times Content is Rated, Most Rated Content by Type, Language Selection.

We will also be tracking how much communicators, web site leaders and other HealthAhead operations teams are leveraging the web site to support and align their business, regional and web site specific efforts. Some of these metrics may be tracked using existing support central tools.

These metrics may include:

Number of Content Submissions by Region, Number of non-corporate Driven Promotions by RCs, Number of Promotional Downloads by Region, Support Central Survey

Feedback Form

Your feedback is important to the web site’s ongoing development, so we’d love to hear your opinions and ideas. To contact us, please use this Feedback form. We will not be able to respond directly, but all feedback will be reviewed, evaluated, and factored into future content decisions. Please note: this form is monitored by IT support staff only. Please do not submit any personal or medical information. And thank you in advance!

Poll and Quiz Responses

On the web site, we will conduct polls and quizzes to better understand user activities, attitudes, interests and knowledge across multiple health topics. These polls may also help us serve you better by asking questions that relate to the usefulness of our web site. We will not capture any personally identifiable information through the collection of poll response data. As part of these polls and quizzes, we will capture responses sorted by country. In the future, we may capture responses sorted by additional anonymous demographics such as language, affiliated GE business, work web site location, gender, etc.

Sharing Content with Family and Friends

We want you to share the web site’s content with important people in your life, so most articles, videos and slideshows can be emailed. To do so, we will ask you to provide your name and the recipient’s email address. We simply use this information to send the content as you request. At this time, we do not capture or store your, or the recipient’s, email address. Please see below to learn how we track and report on email sharing activity.

Please also review GE’s Social Media Guidelines

How we protect information

GE maintains administrative, technical and physical safeguards to protect against unauthorized disclosure, use, alteration or destruction of any information you provide on this web site. We use secure socket layer (SSL) technology to help keep the information you provide on this web site secure. See ‘Information We Share’ and ‘Information We Transfer’ for additional details.

Information we share

We do not sell or otherwise disclose personal information about our visitors, except as described here. We may share information provided by visitors with service providers we have retained to perform services on our behalf. These service providers are contractually restricted from using or disclosing the information, except as necessary to perform services on our behalf or comply with legal requirements. In addition, we may disclose information about you if we are required to do so by law or legal process; to law enforcement authorities or other government officials; or when we believe disclosure is necessary or appropriate to prevent physical harm or financial loss or in connection with an investigation of suspected or actual illegal activity.

Information we transfer

We may transfer the information we collect on this web site to other countries where we do business, but only for the purposes described above. When we transfer your information to other countries, we will protect that information as described here unless otherwise required by applicable laws.

Links to other web sites

We provide links to other web sites for your convenience and information. These web sites may have their own privacy statements in place, which we recommend you review if you visit any linked web sites. We are not responsible for the content of linked web sites or any use of the web sites.

Children’s privacy

This web site is not directed to children under the age of thirteen and we do not knowingly collect personal information from children under the age of thirteen on the web site. If we become aware that we have inadvertently received personal information from a visitor under the age of thirteen, we will delete the information from our records.

Some links on this web site may take web site visitors to web sites that are directed to children. These web sites have their own privacy notices that address children’s privacy. We encourage you to read these privacy notices if you visit any linked web sites directed to children.

Updates to our privacy & data policy

This Privacy & Data Policy may be updated periodically and without prior notice to you to reflect changes in our online information practices. We will post a notice on this web site to notify you of any significant changes to our Privacy & Data Policy, and indicate at the top of this policy when it was most recently updated.

How to contact us

If you have any questions or comments about this Privacy & Data Policy, or if you would like us to update information we have about you or your preferences, please contact us by visiting our Feedback Form.

HealthAhead Mon, 08/17/2020 - 00:00
What Are Empty Calories? The Benefits of Shedding Them from Your Diet

Cutting empty calories from your diet may help you more easily reach or maintain a healthy weight. Through added sugars and solid fats, extra calories may sneak their way into some of your favorite foods. By doing a little homework, you can learn how to kick empty calories to the curb—and enjoy lighter, healthier foods and beverages.

Understanding Empty Calories

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) describes empty calories as the solid fats and added sugars that increase the caloric content of foods and beverages—but add little to no nutritional value. Eating high-calorie foods and beverages, without doing enough physical activity to burn those calories off, may lead to weight gain. Maintaining a healthy weight is important, since it may decrease your risk for medical conditions like heart disease and diabetes.

According to the USDA, you won’t damage  your health by including some empty calories in your diet. However, the organization notes that the majority of people eat and drink far more empty calories than they should for optimal health.

The best goal is to eat only the calories you need to meet your body’s nutritional and energy needs. If you’re not sure how many calories you should consume daily, consider speaking to a healthcare provider. Your doctor or dietitian can advise you on a healthy calorie level based on your lifestyle and other factors.

Empty Calories from Solid Fats

Any fats that remain solid when they are out of the fridge at room temperature are considered solid fats. Butter, shortening, and beef fat all into this category. Processed foods often contain added solid fats, although some do occur naturally in certain foods.

The USDA notes that some of the top food offenders containing solid fats are:

  • Pizza
  • Cheese
  • Processed meats, including bacon, hot dogs, sausages, and ribs
  • Desserts like ice cream, doughnuts, cookies, and cakes

To cut back on these items, opt for lighter foods or substitute ingredients to create a healthier meal. For example, choose pizzas with less cheese and no meat. Use low-fat or fat-free cheese in your recipes. Cook up fresh cuts of meat—like lean chicken breasts or turkey—instead of processed varieties. Lastly, try enjoying fruit sorbets instead of ice cream, and eating smaller portions of other dessert items. Better yet, skip the cake and enjoy a bowl of fresh berries.

Empty Calories from Added Sugars

Many processed foods and drinks contain sweeteners that were added by food companies when the products were prepared. Some of these foods contain nutrients, but have unnecessary added sugar, too—like sweetened applesauce.  However, certain packaged  food products may  have  almost no nutritional benefit, such as candy or soft drinks.

The USDA suggests you watch out for these foods and drinks, which may be loaded with empty calories from sugar:

  • Desserts like ice cream, cookies, pastries, and cakes (these items are especially sneaky, since they have both added sugars and solid fats)
  • Sodas, fruit drinks, sports drinks, and energy drinks
  • Processed breakfast foods like sugar-sweetened cereals, pastries, and doughnuts (the latter two foods have both added sugars and solid fats)

It’s simple to chop some of these items from your daily diet. Try choosing seltzer water with a splash of fruit juice instead of soda. Pick up some whole-grain breakfast foods, like whole wheat bagels with your favorite nut butter or oatmeal sprinkled with fruit. And it’s okay to enjoy dessert in moderation—but remember to pick fruit when you can.

HealthAhead Hint: Lower Your Intake

If you’re not careful about what you eat, the empty calories in your diet may add up fast. Say goodbye to calories that carry little nutritional value—and start choosing foods that give your body what it needs. Fresh fruits and vegetables, lean cuts of meat, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, and nuts are all excellent choices. Even cutting a single 120-calorie cook from your day make a difference over time. The more you pay attention, the more you may start to realize that nutritious choices pay off.