Food can influence how we feel throughout the day and determines when our brains are most alert and productive. Here’s how you can boost your staff’s productivity through encouraging healthy habits in the office.

Miles McLeod

Workplace Consultant

01st Feb 2018

Remove temptation

Admittedly we all have moments of weakness, but one thing’s for sure - if there’s always chocolate biscuits in the kitchen, they’ll always be eaten! While they might seem innocent, they’re really detrimental to your health! Loaded with sugar, high GI carbs and fat - they’re digested quickly and don’t keep you feeling full for a long time at all. Then there’s temptation - who can only have one chocolate biscuit?! If you’re constantly topping up the digestives, why not think about swapping these for a daily fruit basket instead?

Healthy choices

If you supply toast and spreads for your staff, then swap some of the provisions and preserves for low sugar and low carb alternatives. This will keep your staff’s blood sugar more regulated throughout the day, instead of experiencing a spike first thing and then a sugar dip mid-morning.

Encourage breakfast

Healthy choices are best kept up when they form part of a habit. To get your staff in the habit of having breakfast, use this to form the cornerstone of a team ritual. We bet if you do a quick poll, an alarming number of your staff will be skipping out on the most important meal of the day. Keep it cool Providing a fridge and microwave is essential in enabling your staff to bring in their own lunch and snacks - removing the need for prepackaged foods full of preservatives and high-sugar alternatives.

Stand up

Standing desks are becoming increasingly popular, due to the dual health benefits of increased blood flow and heightened calorie burn. We spend an exceptional amount of time being sedentary - whether it’s at a chair at our desks, on the train (if you’re lucky!), or sitting in front of the television. Standing at work is one of the easiest ways to reduce your sedentary time. It’s been proven that standing can burn up to 50 calories more per hour than sitting. If you stand for three hours a day, five days a week - this equates to 750 calories a week, the same as a medium intensity 60 minute fitness class! What a way to squeeze in an extra workout...

Break time

Although we’ve mostly focused on bad foods, there are still benefits to eating and taking a break! Having a proper break for lunch in a kitchen or breakout space encourages staff to leave their desk, sit down in an open space and unwind. Not only does this stop them from continually staring at their monitor (and splashing bolognese on the keyboard!) but it encourages serendipitous interaction and conversation between colleagues. A great way to get to know people from across the floor - and you might pick up a cooking tip or two!

"Encouraging healthy habits can really improve employee motivation, productivity, and engagement. Something as simple as walking meetings or allowing employees to take an half hour break to go and get some fresh air can make a huge difference."
Nora St-Aubin, Officevibe