By Quad-City Nutrition Expert Jeni Tackett RD, LD
Workplaces can be your enemy when it comes to eating healthy foods, right? From birthday celebrations to lunches out with coworkers, the workplace may be increasing your waistline.
How can you resist the temptations at work? Arm yourself with some willpower with these 5 tips!
- Eat a healthy breakfast before work. Do not go to work hungry. If you do, then you will be tempted to eat the donuts in the break room or the candy in the boss’s candy dish. I attended a dietitian meeting (yes, even dietitians do this) where both pastries and homemade cake were provided. I resisted both of these temptations because I had oatmeal and fruit for breakfast that morning.
- Bring healthy snacks to work with you. If you do not bring food to snack on, then you are more likely to eat the cookies, candy, and brownies that fill the break room. I bring 2-3 pieces of fresh fruit to work and set them on my desk to remind me to eat them. Then when I’m hungry around 3 p.m. I will be less tempted to eat anything I can get my hands on.
- Make a plan for lunch. I recommend bringing your lunch to work most days. If you have days when you have to go out for lunch, have a plan to eat sensibly. Plan to order a side salad instead of French fries. Order a lunch-sized portion or a la cart instead of a large meal. Eat slowly and stop when you are satisfied rather than stuffed. Try including a fruit or vegetable in your meal when you dine out. If you bring your lunch, you can control your intake even more to help avoid overeating.
- Indulge occasionally: It’s okay to enjoy some birthday cake or a piece of candy at work. The problem arises when you eat these foods every day, even when you’re not hungry. If you know that a coworker is bringing a special dessert, enjoy a small portion of the treat. If you think you are eating due to habit, keep a food journal and record what and how much you eat at work and why. If you are eating out of boredom or habit, work on changing those habits.
- Change the Culture: Have you ever brought in a fruit salad or veggie tray to work? If you are trying to eat healthy, share your habits with your coworkers. You may have coworkers that are trying to eat healthy also. You can talk to coworkers about having healthier choices at work and make changes in your workplace culture!
|Meet Jeni Tackett, Let’s Move Quad Cities Nutrition Blogger. Jeni is a registered and licensed dietitian for Unity Point-Trinity. Jeni counsels her clients on weight loss and nutrition. You can read Jeni’s bio and other blog posts by clicking here.|