Improve your health at work
Clocking over 40 hours each week at a job means that the average American spends about a third of our time in the workplace. With so much time spent in one place, it’s important to make sure we are making the most of that time and doing the best we can to stay healthy.
From steering clear of the flu to managing stress, being more active, and maintaining weight loss, it can seem like a lot to juggle on top of our busy workday. But by starting small and adding a few things at a time, you can make healthy changes manageable. Here are our tips and tricks you can start using immediately to improve your health while at work!
Eat a good breakfast.
You’ve probably heard the saying “breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” Yet most Americans admit to skipping it altogether, citing lack of time as the main reason. Having your morning meal will leave you feeling refreshed and fuller longer, help prevent unwanted snacking, and improve concentration and mental sharpness.
Prepare for the stress you can’t avoid.
Stress in the workplace can run you down and take a toll on your performance if it’s not well managed. The key here is learning to identify your triggers and have a quick coping technique planned.
Reduce sitting time.
Many of us have long commutes and even longer periods of sitting once we’re at work. Finding ways to cut that time can add minutes of activity to your day. Counting your sitting time as well as your active time can help you make better choices to lower your risk for health problems.
Build a healthy lunch routine.
One of the common barriers to eating healthy (and managing weight) can be the lunchtime rut. We’ve all been there; that moment when you rush out the door, forget to pack a lunch, and are faced with making decisions on the go. Typically those decisions are not the healthiest. With a little bit of planning and creativity, you can make lunch healthier than ever!
Wash your hands.
We touch a lot of things and meet a lot of people in the workplace. That’s why hand washing is so important. Believe it or not, hand washing is one of the easiest ways to protect ourselves from getting sick or spreading germs to others — yet many of us don’t do it often enough. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, hand washing is the single most effective way to stop the spread of disease — and not just during flu season!
Prevent back pain from sitting.
Sedentary habits can lead to countless health-related conditions, including back pain. So how do you attempt to dodge the bullet that affects eight of 10 people at some point in their lifetimes? Get up off your seat, improve your posture, properly set up your workstation, and manage your stress! Throughout the day, use reminders or visual cues to help you remember to take a moment and prevent back pain. Your body will thank you for years to come!
Avoid digital eye strain.
The average office worker spends anywhere from six to nine hours each workday on the computer or staring at a screen. In addition, between work, television, smartphone activity, and tablets, Americans are locked in most of the day to some type of screen. To give your eyes a break, follow the 20-20-20 rule. It’s simple and easy to try: Every 20 minutes, take a break to stare at something 20 feet away for 20 seconds.
Make time for physical activity.
The easiest place to start is by breaking up sitting time with movement. Ideas include taking part of your lunch break to walk, scheduling walking meetings, parking farther away and walking into work, and taking the stairs as much as possible. Remember to use your desk stretches often at work as well.
Try “office recess.”
The concept of office recess has been adopted by organizations all over the world, and now it’s your turn to join in the mid-day energy boost. Try these 12 office exercises for a change of pace in your workday. We all have a few moments where we can pause and do something for ourselves, and this guide can get you started on the path to relaxation, feeling better, and improved health.
Change your snacking habits.
Snacks may be a staple in the workday that give you energy to keep going. Packing small meals you can eat on the go is especially important when you’re moving from meeting to meeting throughout the day. If you are starving and have a snack available, you’ll be less likely to grab a candy bar out of a vending machine. Simple and easy go-to snacks include hard boiled eggs, rice cakes, almonds, and protein bars.
This healthy habit plays an important role in both fitness and weight loss. Your body uses water to maintain its temperature, lubricate the joints, remove waste, and much more. For most people water is best for hydration, but some foods such as fruits and vegetables also have high percentage of water.
Get enough sleep.
Losing sleep can impact all areas of health and wellness and cause a dip in work productivity. Getting between seven and eight hours sleep (or the amount that works best for your body) will help you to tackle the workday feeling energized and refreshed.
Practice good hygiene.
Many of us eat lunch at our desk and some breakfast as well. With the growing demands of our jobs, multitasking at lunch is not uncommon — but can be dangerous. That’s because of the hidden bacteria lurking on our desktops. It’s important to make sure you protect yourself from food borne illness by cleaning your area before and after you eat, properly storing hot and cold foods, and eating office snacks within the proper recommendation ranges.
Staying healthy at work doesn’t have to seem like a chore! The best advice is to start small and add as you can. Gradually you will find you are feeling better, more productive, and a lot less stressed! What tip will you try today?