Following up on our post Keeping Fit and Healthy at AntiSocial, we’re looking at our team’s recommendations for eating healthy when living an office life. Whether it’s lack of time, temptations from treats or pressure to hit happy hour, there are countless forces trying to seduce us into easier and indulgent food options. To fight back, check out our tips below.
Don’t skip breakfast
Let’s start with breakfast, with studies finding benefits to a healthy morning meal and the negative side effects of skipping it. Assuming you didn’t sleepwalk to a bag of shredded cheese in your fridge, the longest time between meals is overnight. Eating within two hours of waking can make a difference in the way you metabolize your blood sugar throughout the whole day. With a breakfast your glucose and insulin levels are more balanced, benefiting your energy and concentration and can also improve mood and lower stress levels. You’ll also avoid hunger-induced hormones that can lead to overeating at lunch or caving to a less-healthy meal.
The key is “healthy” and a chocolate croissant isn’t your metabolism’s friend. Taylor, our content & social strategist recommends “I have oatmeal in the mornings – and I always have a bag of chia, a bag of hemp hearts, and frozen blueberries in the fridge to add on the go. Overnight chia and oats in mason jars is another good go-to. Make the night before take to work in the AM.”
Prep fruit and veggies in advance
It’s all too easy to hit a corner store for some packaged, salty or sweet snack. The trick to getting ahead of junk food is to prep fruit and veggies in advance, saving valuable morning time. “I chop up veggies over the weekend, carrots, cucumber, celery, etc. Have them ready to pop in a ziploc through the week. I always have apples in the fridge- bring those with peanut butter.” – Taylor
Have go-to home-cooked meals
Since all those cooking shows you binge-watched didn’t improve your cooking skills, here’s a good tip. Just practice a few go-to healthy meals to cover during the week. The best are ones that easily swap up some ingredients so you don’t get bored. Such as cook a favourite protein that’ll last through the week, then mix up veggies, starches, sauces, or spices. On top of ensuring the meal is healthier than going to a restaurant or getting take-out, you can portion your food. This way you won’t over-eat and wish you were napping all afternoon instead of being productive.
We know how busy life can get, especially in the summer. Put those mason jars to use, and pack them with your favourite salad combinations. Dressing goes on the bottom, veggies and other salad goodies get piled on top. Everything stays separate and dressing-free until you toss the salad together in the bowl — never eat another soggy salad again. Even better, stay on top of your healthy eating habits and prep these ahead of time so they’re ready to grab-and-go for lunches or snacks. #QualityIngredients #QualityMoments #WesternFamily
“Sunday’s are reserved for meal prep. I usually prepare lots of veggies, lean meats, shakes and fruit. I eat pretty clean during the week at the office and eat whatever I want on the weekends. One of my go-to’s is chicken, steamed broccoli and sriracha – Then mix up the sauce or veggies some days.” – Melissa, content strategist
Try a healthy meal kit delivery service
We can’t blame anyone for getting rabid when someone suggests ordering pizza for lunch or caves in for one after a long day at the office. Lucky for our health, a growing trend in Vancouver is here to help. If you’re strapped for time, ideas or motivation to cook healthy, you can get a service to deliver the ingredients and instructions to chef it up yourself, designed to be quick, easy and fresh. Some local options are HelloFresh, Chef’s Plate, Miss Fresh and Vital Supply Co. Fresh Prep has a few fans in our office, including Mitra, social strategist “I love Fresh Prep- the food is portioned, chopped up and delivered straight to your door and all I have to do is cook it- so I love doing that at night and then bringing my leftovers to lunch! Saves time and money.”
Keep healthy snacks on deck
Keeping healthy snacks in your office or secretly stashed in your desk is crucial to afternoon survival. We’ve developed this habit thanks to working with Western Family and Kernel’s Popcorn, two amazing Canadian companies that serve up healthy snacks. Western Family has nuts, popcorn, and trail mix that our team can never get enough of. Also, the variety from Kernel’s Popcorn ensures their healthy alternative to chips and candy never gets boring.
Drink lots of it, especially instead of anything full of sugar. That’s it really.
BONUS TIP: Mindful eating, aka, try not to eat at your desk
Taking a break to spend some time outdoors or going for a short walk is a chance to improve your mental and physical state, helping your personal wellbeing and work productivity. You can also make your lunch break a chance to practice mindfulness, by eating away from your desk. Eating at your desk means you’re still at the mercy of your notifications. Checking your phone or replying to emails in between bites. Your mind isn’t fully into your work and you’re not fully enjoying your meal. If the weather works, take your lunch outside, take in the fresh air, check out nature and do some people watching. Or if it’s rainy, eat in any office common areas and chat with your coworkers (about something non-work related – save that for Slack).
Related Post: Keeping Fit and Healthy at AntiSocial Solutions