Work takes up a big percentage of our time here on this planet, and you should therefore want to make it as healthy an experience as possible. While some jobs involve manual labor and obviously lend themselves to a healthier lifestyle, this is not the case for all of them. Even if you work in a sedentary office job, you should still do everything you can to keep healthy. If you are struggling for inspiration on how to do so, here is a guide to help you stay healthy at work.
The fuel that you put in your body is such an essential part of staying healthy. One of the best ways that you can keep control of it is by making your own lunch and snacks ahead of time. This way, you won’t be tempted to buy unhealthy items while you are at work. Unfortunately, many workplaces still have vending machines that are stocked with food that has low nutritional value. It also helps if you eat a nutritionally balanced breakfast before you go to work. A few examples of healthy snacks that can keep you going until lunchtime include nuts, fruit, and granola bars. Wash them down with a healthy fruit smoothie and you have the perfect blend of nutrients!
Drink Enough Water
The simple act of staying hydrated is such an invaluable way of keeping healthy, but many of us don’t pay close enough attention to it. Dehydration can lead to all sorts of negative effects ranging from the physical to the mental. If you find that you are suffering from drowsiness or feeling sluggish during the day, the culprit could easily be dehydration.
If you engage in more physical activity or you live in a hotter climate, you will need to drink more water, but as a general rule of thumb, you should aim for around six to eight glasses of H2O per day. Pure water is the best way of staying hydrated, but you can also get your necessary fluid intake by eating plenty of fresh fruit. Don’t substitute caffeinated beverages for water. While they can be useful in keeping your energy levels up, they will not hydrate you in the same way. Also, you should be wary of drinking too much caffeine late in the day as this can lead to poor sleep, which can negatively impact your work performance too.
Keep a Clean and Safe Workspace
In the age of a pandemic, it is even more important that you keep on top of good hygiene practices. It is a good idea to have some sanitizing wipes on your desk, as well as a bottle of hand gel. Keep some tissues to catch any coughs and sneezes and dispose of used tissues in the bin. Even if you work from home, keeping a clean workstation can help you to avoid any unnecessary illnesses. When possible, wash your hands during the day, keeping your distance from colleagues as necessary. You also need to ensure that your safety is protected at work, so speak to your managers about how they are protecting you. If you get into an accident at work, you may need legal support from Brown and Crouppen.
Squeeze in Some Exercise
Ideally, you should be able to squeeze in some exercise during your working day. This could be through walking or cycling to work, which has the added benefit of being the more environmentally friendly approach. Alternatively, you could try and fit in some exercise during your lunch hour. It doesn’t have to be anything too vigorous. Just a half hour of walking every day will get your heart working and help you to burn off some calories. There are even some exercises that you could try without leaving your desk. For example, some people try sitting on a medicine ball instead of a chair as a way of boosting their abdominal muscles.
Maintain Good Posture
When you spend all day, every day sitting down and staring at a screen, it is all too easy for your posture to become damaged as a result. First of all, you should ensure that your desk, chair, and computer monitor are all at the right height. If you are constantly craning your neck, you can easily find that aches and pains start to develop. Some people even find that a standing desk is best for their posture. Even if you are sitting down all day long, you should stand up from time to time to stretch. This leads us nicely onto the next point…
Take Regular Breaks
Taking regular breaks is an important part of maintaining good physical and mental health at work. From a concentration point of view, our brains were not designed to keep focused on a task for hours and hours at once. Even if it is just for a couple of minutes, you should find that you are able to focus much better with a break. Perhaps you could combine your break with another activity such as going to make yourself a cup of tea or fetch a glass of water. This way, you are also getting some steps in, which can contribute to your overall physical health.
Manage Your Stress Better
Stress is an underlying factor which can so much damage to your health, but far too many of us are not able to manage it effectively. It can help to make a to-do list at the start of the day that details all the tasks that you need to do that day in order. Rather than putting off a less attractive task until the end of the day, why not make it a priority? This way, you don’t have it hanging over your head the whole time. When you finish at work, engage in some activities that you enjoy rather than scrolling through your emails or engaging in mentally damaging activities like spending hours on social media. Instead, try going outside and getting your body moving. Just spending time with the people closest to you can make such a big difference in improving your mental health. While many of these techniques are small and simple, they can add up to making a big difference to your mental health and well-being.