This article contains 3 ways for busy people to stay fed and healthy at work to maintain their productivity.
As we all know, the workplace can be demanding, but sacrificing meals in the name of productivity does not ensure that projects will get done faster. In fact, it’s quite the opposite, as your focus and energy are lowered immensely when operating on fumes alone. Instead, it is much better for your health and career to find ways to nourish your body throughout the day. Three habits both employees and employers can utilize are: prioritize breakfast, simplify snacking, and commit to meal planning. Together, these practices take away the pressure to plan consistent meals every few hours, as well as keep you from reaching for convenient, prepackaged junk food to get that sugar high.
Everyone needs an adequate amount of fuel to help get them through the busy work week, so even if your breakfast is simple, it should still be a priority. For example, a serving of oatmeal with seasonal berries contains fibre and nutrients to energize your day. If you don’t have time to make it in the morning, no sweat! You can always opt for an overnight oat recipe, that way you can wake up to a delicious breakfast, grab it and go. Make a little extra if you want a snack later in the day or set yourself up for the rest of the week. Another option could be a morning smoothie to get you your much needed vitamins and minerals and can be enjoyed on your route to work. Smoothies don’t have to be just contain fruits either. Adding vegetables like beets, spinach, carrots, or parsley is a great way to get a boost of nutrients for the day. Whatever you choose, breakfast does not always need to be first thing in the morning, either! Breakfast, or “breaking the fast,” is the first meal you eat after not eating or “fasting” overnight. Breaking your fast with the right foods will take your body out of “sleep mode” and kickstart your metabolism for a great day of energy. For more on breakfast and its importance, check out our article: Breakfast – Is It Important?
When your schedule is already jam packed, squeezing in a meal during one of your short lunch breaks might feel impossible, which is why it is so important to have several small snacks throughout the day. These do not have to be complicated and can consist of only one or two ingredients. Combinations such as apples and almond butter, peanut butter and celery, hummus and veggies, or Greek yogurt with nuts, are all healthy options that will keep you moving throughout the day. However, be careful not to mindlessly reach for snacks all day, as you don’t want to overeat. To help regulate yourself, try portioning your snacks into small bowls or containers so you know when you’ve had enough and can save some goodies for later.
Committing to a meal plan helps alleviate the stress of trying to cook meals for breakfast, lunch, or –if your workday runs late– supper. Set a date and time that works for you so there is enough room in your schedule to buy all the necessary groceries and prep your meals for the next week. By sticking to a routine, you can start to create some meaningful habits that will not only keep you fed, but also productive during the work week. If this still feels like too big of a task, you can try a food subscription box like HelloFresh or chefs plate, so that all you need to worry about is throwing the ingredients together without a frantic trip to the grocery store.
For all the self-proclaimed workaholics out there, stop sacrificing your stomach in the name of productivity! It only holds you back from getting through your to-do list, which is bound to only cause more stress. Start your day on a good note by prioritizing breakfast as it will give you the nourishment you need to propel yourself into the busy workday.
To keep that energy up, snack frequently or plan ahead by dedicating a day and time to meal prep each week. Whether you do this together or separately, the goal is to keep healthy food within reach, so you don’t have to rely on your local fast-food joint to give you that much needed boost of energy.
Download this resource article How to Stay Fed at Work: A Guide for People Too Busy to Eat.