It is often hard to interrupt a busy work day to eat healthy. Maybe you skip breakfast as you try to get to the office on time, or miss lunch because you are in the midst of an important project. Grabbing a donut as you stop for coffee is quicker than making eggs at home. Swallowing a handful of M&Ms or cadging fast food at lunch is pretty easy, too. It’s just that eating that way really does weaken you, and is a big reason people look unhealthy and then actually get sick.
Healthy meals and snacks are essential for your health. It is repeatedly proven that eating healthy can cure and prevent a myriad of diseases. A healthy diet will even help you get your job done better and faster. And it’s not that hard to do, even on the job.
Food gives your body the building blocks to make your skin, hair, tissues, bones, and cells. It also provides the nutrients required to make enzymes, hormones, and neurotransmitters (the nervous system’s conduits which, in turn, allow us to think, remember, and even feel good.) Food supplies the fuel for our bodies to run, and we need to provide it with high quality, healthy fuel, rather than the low-grade brand, to function optimally. This is why a whole foods diet, with a proper balance of macro-nutrients (protein, fat, and complex carbohydrates) and micro-nutrients (vitamins, minerals, and trace elements) is so important. A Whole Foods Diet includes lean meats, moderate amounts of dairy, vegetables, fruits, whole grains, beans and legumes. It means avoiding processed foods (including white flours), pre-packaged foods, fried foods, refined sugars, and excessive caffeine.
Here is how to incorporate a healthy diet into your on-the-run workday:
Eat a good breakfast. It is best to have some protein in the morning to get your brain working.
- Eggs: hard-boiled, poached, scrambled, etc.
- Smoothie: blend frozen fruit, banana, and protein powder with nut milk, coconut milk, or water.
- Yogurt: mix with chopped apples, walnuts, raisins, and cinnamon.
Stop for lunch. Eating in the middle of the day will help to fuel your body and your brain. When you don’t eat, your blood sugar drops. That’s why you may feel tired and or in a mental fog. I think it is best to pack your own lunch, but if you eat out, choose wisely.
- Salads, soups, and healthy leftovers from the night before are good choices.
- Always include a wide variety of vegetables, and a small amount of protein.
- Avoid fast food dining, fried foods, and sweets that can all make you feel like you need an afternoon nap.
Snack often. Most people need to eat every 2-3 hours in order to function at their best. So, keep healthy snacks in your desk drawer. Empty your candy jar in the garbage and fill it with trail mix, raisins, or oranges. This way, when you get hungry you are giving your body something good.
Drink Water. In order for your body to run at its best, drink half of your body weight in ounces (if you weigh 150 lbs., drink 75 ounces of water). It sounds like a lot to drink, but every cell in your body needs water.