Missing meals, chugging down ten cups of coffee, and taking frequent trips to McDonald’s seem like necessary evils when you’re struggling to meet a deadline in the office. But are your eating habits at work wreaking havoc on your health? This article on WorkAwesome.com explains why you should worry about what you eat and why exchanging your junk food for celery sticks is good advice.


YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT

According to author Ana da Silva, it’s not just about eating regularly; it’s about the food you consume. She explains that while too much fast food will clog your arteries (and you’ll feel it!), eating just salad every day won’t give you enough energy to keep up with the demands of work. This is why developing a balanced diet—with stress on the “balanced”—is important.

For the junk food addicts (and by junk, we mean food with high levels of sugar, fat, and salt), eating healthy isn’t easy. In an article in The Guardian (which has since been removed from the website), David Kessler, a former commissioner of the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), discusses how food engineers create foods that, as Da Silva puts it, “make us feel good while eating and to make us eat more while still feeling unsatisfied.”

Besides being high on the junk food meter, these foods are made to be very soft to reduce the need for chewing. If you chew less, you eat faster. The faster you eat, the less you’ll feel full—thus boosting the need to consume more food.

The piece de resistance is this: the food provides increased levels of dopamine, a pleasure-inducing neurotransmitter that causes you to eat more precisely because it makes you feel good. The result? Something akin to addiction.

Getting over an “addiction” is hard, but the switch to a healthy diet is a necessity if you don’t want to end up an overworked, malnourished mess. So take that first step and take care of your body. Louise Horner, an Australian dietician, shares a few tips to get you started:

eating_healthy_at_work.jpg- Popcorn with a sprinkling of salt is a-okay, as long as it doesn’t have butter.

- Exchange sinfully sweet favorites like cake and chocolate for dried fruit, raisin toast, and low fat/low sugar fruit yogurts.

- Celery sticks don’t need to be boring and tasteless. Mix them with other fruit and veggie snacks, and put them into salads and sandwiches.


For more tips and details, check out the full article on WorkAwesome.com.


(Photo source: sxc.hu)

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