Staying healthy at work is tough, especially when something nasty is going around. But beyond your average cold, office workers are susceptible to dry eye, back pain, stiff shoulders, stress and more, all symptoms known as “Office Syndrome.”
However, we have a few tips for busy bees on how to stay healthy and buzzing in your hive- er, office.
Work. Move. Walk.
Sitting 9–5 at your desk is bad for your body, muscles, and joints. Walk around the office and stretch every now and then. Take breaks every few hours and move your body. Walking to different floors or walking to the cafeteria during lunchtime can help you break away from remaining at your desk all day, and it will also help to increase your energy. If you need to discuss work with colleagues, walk to their desks instead of calling. And always opt for the elevator instead of taking the stairs. (Unless you work on the 23rd floor. In that case maybe walk the last few flights?)
Eat a Healthy Lunch
You are what you eat, so make sure you eat healthy food for lunch. You can either prepare and bring your own lunch, or if your company provides food, choose a healthy option or a healthy base that you can dress up yourself. Take your time chewing your food and don’t rush through eating. Foods that contain omega-3’s such as salmon, avocado, and nuts are great for us white collars who need brain power during the day.
When you work and use your brain, you often feel cravings to eat something. This can lead to a bad habit of eating junk food and unhealthy snacks such as chips and sweets. However, snacks don’t always have to be bad. Choose nuts such as almonds and pistachios, fresh fruit, edamame (our favorite!), and dark chocolate. Glucose from dark chocolate can satisfy your cravings and the flavanoids, caffeine, and theobromine in chocolate are thought to work together to improve alertness and mental skills. Keep a selection at your desk so you’re prepared when hunger- or cravings- strikes.
Keep Greens Close
Plants can help reduce stress. Studies done by Dr. Virginia Lohr of Washington State University and a Texas A&M University research team indicate that indoor plants can reduce stress levels and even improve productivity. Plants can be used to relieve your eyes. Green, a color you found in the natural environment, radiates a relaxing and calm feeling.
Rest Your Eyes
We rely on our eyes for work, especially in this era electronic devices. Staring at a screen all day causes strain and fatigue to our eyes. It is recommended to take a break and rest your eyes every 20-30 minutes by looking far away at somewhere else. Blink often, especially if you work with at a computer or wear contact lenses.
People often forget that health and well-being are consisted of two sides: physical and mental. We usually care for our bodies, but we often forgot to take care of mental health.
There are several ways to relax your mind and improve your emotions and mental health, such as meditation, breathing exercises, talking to somebody, listening to music, or taking a small break every few hours. If you feel really stressed, try smiling and reading something funny to make yourself laugh.
Source: Easterling Consulting
Everyone knows we need to drink eight glasses of water per day, however, many of us fail to do so. Remind yourself to drink plenty of water and you will notice yourself feeling more refreshed. Staying hydrated will keep your mind off soda or coffee and it may help you fight off other cravings as well. Try to stick with plain water and avoid sugary drinks. If you want a little flavor, add slices of strawberry or lime into your water bottle for a delightful twist.
Hungry for more? Check out Why a healthy office is good for you and your bottom line.
Bee is a food and environmental lover currently living in Boston. While studying in Boston, she discovered her passion in developing a healthy lifestyle: a balance of diet, exercise, and mind&body rest. She loves cooking, running, and traveling around scenic and natural sites.