It’s hard to please everyone, but cookies and chips do a pretty good job at it. That’s why it’s easy to fall into the trap of stocking your break room with not-so-healthy snacks.
But doing so isn’t helping the productivity- or health- of your employees one bit. We’re sharing why as well as easy ways to stock snacks that boost productivity- and are easy to source.
They increase stress.
Are you a stress eater? When we’re feeling the pressure, it’s easy to reach for something quick and easy, and unfortunately, these foods tend to be loaded with sugars and highly refined carbohydrates. What happens then is a sugar rush that later leads to a crash in hormones and blood sugar, leaving us susceptible to additional stress.
Break the cycle by stocking your pantry with snack options that are also healthy. Granola with yogurt is a great pair, along with nuts and dried fruit, whole food granola bars, and fruit. Be sure to keep several varieties of tea in stock, as coffee has been linked to stress.
They lead to increased absences.
The effects of poor health and obesity cost U.S. companies more than $225 billion per year in lost productivity from a decreased ability for employees to focus along with increased absences. In fact, this 4imprint study found that employees with poor nutritional habits had 21% more absences than co-workers with healthy eating habits. And when employees are frequently absent, the entire work environment is plunged into stress and decreased productivity.
Make it easy for employees to access healthy options. Whether you offer office lunch catering or keep your pantry stocked with healthy options, find foods that meet the “grab and go” criteria. Stock a variety to prevent employees from slipping back into old habits.
They don’t cater to dietary needs.
Celiac disease and gluten intolerances are becoming increasingly mainstream, and more offices are mindful of stocking their snack pantry with gluten free options.
But other dietary needs exist, such as allergies and lifestyle choices of being vegetarian or vegan, and oftentimes, the only snack pantry items available to this type of demographic are few and far between, and oftentimes unhealthy.
An increasing number of corporate lunch caterers are adapting to these dietary needs, but how do you handle the break room?
Help all of your employees feel included while also ensuring that they’re snacking on healthy foods. Keep individual packets of almond butter on hand along with other plant-based snacks like veggies and hummus, whole-wheat pretzels, gluten free energy bars, and more. If you’re not sure of where to start, as your employees with dietary needs what they like.
Considering everything on your to-do list, stocking the break room pantry can be an after thought. But what you feed your employees directly affects the productivity of your office, so take the time to source healthy, grab-and-go snack alternatives.
Meg is a dreamer, entrepreneur, and homesteader based in the White Mountains of New Hampshire. She loves her cats, feasting, and road trips in her green VW Bug.