It is no news that the current corporate culture is not as healthy as it seems. While being at its peak, work stress is inversely related to the wellbeing of the people. With early office hours and deadlines to meet, we often forget to properly attend to our stomach needs. Right from skipping meals to eating burgers and whatnot in between, the way to healthy eating is the road often not taken.
As per research, adults spend 8 hours every day at work, and out of them, 66% are overweight or obese. The fact that we invest so much time in the office is proof that anything we eat and drink there, will affect our overall health.
It becomes very challenging to maintain healthy eating habits at work when you have so many distractions. For instance, there might be some office team lunch or a coworker’s birthday party. In times like this, there is no other alternative but to join in the celebration by eating that big vanilla cake. However, there is nothing wrong with it, for there will be temptations, but self-control is something which one can work on and add to their skillset.
Tips to Maintain Healthy Eating Habits at Work
Choosing to adopt healthy eating habits is one thing and being able to live upto that is completely another. Therefore, we bring you a few tips on how to escape those unhealthy food cravings and actually go with the plan.
1. Carry your Lunch
What is the easiest way to avoid eating anything and everything while at work? Simple. Pack your lunch. Not only is it healthy but economical too for a burger or a plate of noodles every day will burn a hole in your pocket. Thus, home-cooked meals are a clear winner when it comes to health and wealth at the same time.
2. Eat and Exercise
Healthy food options are a necessity to live a healthy lifestyle. And if your healthy routine includes 60% of a good diet, the other 40% is exercise. Nowadays, every individual is suffering from something or the other. Heart disease, diabetes are seen in almost every household. As a result, healthy choices are something every employee of every organization is ought to make.
Besides, eating should be complemented by exercise. Working out requires time. Employee health is a significant issue these days, and corporates are working towards providing their employees a healthy work culture. Therefore, employers are encouraging employees to go on walks, runs and do other physical activities through the implementation of corporate wellness programs. Corporates are driving their workforce to gear up and focus on their health by participating in primary fitness events of walking or doing short workout sessions like a 7-minute workout. If this is not an improvement, what else is?
Hence, this encourages a healthy work environment together with boosting work performance.
3. Keep yourself Hydrated
Eating healthy does not just mean the food but also talks about the drink you consume. Water is the most underrated drink there is. Especially when we are working, we fail to keep ourselves hydrated.
Even mild hydration can lead to fatigue and anxiety, which further affects productivity. This is why carrying a water bottle is necessary, and if it seems boring, you can always add some flavor to it in the form of fresh fruits.
4. Maintain Distance with Candies
Gobbling down on whatever is in front of you is a habit most of us possess. We cannot keep ourselves from grabbing that one candy we discover on the desk. This creates a severe problem. Eating snacks here and there add up to a few calories without us even realizing it. Research says every adult consumed an average of 2.2 more candies when the candy bowl was within reach against when it was kept somewhere hidden.
So you know what to do with that candy bowl you find in that corner.
5. Eat a Filling Breakfast
The first meal of the day works in volumes. As they say, Morning shows the day. Likewise, the morning meal should be a filling one with all the nutritious food you can get. Eating a healthy breakfast keeps you fueled throughout the day and keeps your engine running along with regulating blood sugar levels and enhancing productivity. The breakfast meal should be rich in fruits and vegetables, and eating homemade meals in the morning prevents you from loading up on unhealthy junk food. If needed, you can also keep track of your nutrition to be aware of the calorie intake and protein and other nutrients.
6. Set a Lunch Schedule
When you carry your lunch to the office, learn to schedule it too. Healthy lunches call for healthy schedules. It is often seen that due to constant work pressure, there are people who skip breakfast and lunch or do breakfast at the time of lunch. This is straightway unhealthy. Try to maintain a proper routine and set a clock for your lunch. Eat lunch at the right hour. If there is a fixed lunch break, eat it right then, for this habit will prevent you from skipping meals.
7. Take note of Healthy Eateries
There might be times when you are running late for work and cannot cook yourself some lunch. In such a situation, one has to eat in some restaurant or so. Preparing beforehand for a condition would be a wise decision because giving yourself over to the fancy restaurants and eating pizza and burgers will take your calorie intake to its peak. And nobody wants that. So what do you do?
All you need to do is mini research on the nearby restaurants about the kind of healthy food they serve, and you are all set. You no longer have to be skeptical about what to eat and what not to during those times. Even while going out for work lunches, make sure the peers know about your eating habits and let you order a salad or anything healthy.
8. Store Healthy Snacks
If you are someone who is looking to adopt healthy eating habits, make sure you are well-equipped with smart snacks at all times. Office refrigerator, desk drawers- the places where you can keep your healthy snacks stacked in for you to stave off hunger.
So, are you up for snacks in the form of protein bars, gluten free chocolate bars, fat-free yogurt, or dried nuts?
9. Learn to say No
Are you one of those people who have a tough time saying no to people? Welcome to the club.
It becomes challenging when you are always nice to people. And, it is very exhausting and harmful to self. When that coworker offers you a piece of chips, you tend to take it. Then you have it and after that, what follows is a guilt trip. You intake calories just for the sake of being nice. It does not seem logical, which is why you should start taking a stand for your health. Someone offers you food, tell them about the diet you maintain, and they will obviously understand. This is not rude, but making people aware of your own health choices.
10. Let go of Fancy Coffee
It is an obvious thing for new employees at work to try to get into the culture. Even a non-coffee person like me became a coffee addict when I joined my first job. It didn’t work, though, as now I am back to being a no-coffee person. However, sipping coffee is good, but if you are adding syrups, honey, cream, and a whole lot of milk to it, all you are doing is consuming extra calories. No point, isn’t it?
11. Avoid Unhealthy Drinks
There is water, and then there is every other drink available. As much healthy water is, you cannot say the same for every drink. Full of preservatives and calories are what these soft drinks and juices are made of. So avoid drinking these drinks because water is all you need.
12. Maintain Hygiene levels
Healthy eating does not always mean what the food contains. It also involves you maintaining a hygiene level. If the desk is your eating place, make sure it is properly sanitized, and also always remember to keep your lunch in the refrigerator as soon as you reach work. Most importantly, wash hands before eating- one of the simplest yet the least followed ritual of eating.
13. Control your Cravings
Making healthier choices in food takes a lot of self-control. I, for one, could not go through with it at the first go. However, eventually, everyone comes around. The first and foremost rule towards healthy living is the ability to curb your urges. Craving for a plate of fries is very common, yet controlling yourself from eating it is what defines control. Craving control is one of the essential conditions if you want to lead a healthy lifestyle.
14. Do not Stress-eat
You will find working individuals going through emotional eating. Yes, you heard that right. Emotional eating is a real thing. When there is too much stress and frustration, we tend to eat more, at times. Of course, that does not help. The only thing that it does is weight gain. The workday might get hectic, but you have to be sensible enough not to indulge in stress eating.
15. Get peer Support
If your workplace is the spot which encourages you to stay fit, what else do you want?
Many times, if you are lucky enough, your coworkers can be supportive enough towards following a healthy routine. Like-minded people can get along and participate in the wellness programs together, challenging each other, thereby building motivation within.
Working 8 hours straight is already tiresome. On top of that, if you are not maintaining a healthy diet, your efficiency will decrease, which nobody is ready for. Even if it is easier said than done, worry not. Take note of the points mentioned above, give it a shot and see the changes for yourself.
This article is written by Dipshi Bhattacharjee. Besides working as a Content Writer at Vantage Circle and Vantage Fit, she is an animal lover with a huge fascination for Cinema, Television & Foreign languages.
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