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Written by ripelondondev on March 15, 2024

Nutrition At Work - The Truth About Healthy Eating At Work

From boosting productivity and employee health to reducing sick leave and poor diets, the benefits of workplace nutrition never really stop. At Ripe London, we think the benefits that come with prioritising nutrition in the office are worth uncovering. That's why we're here exploring how something as simple as a healthy diet can make workplaces more efficient, productive, and happy. We'll also give plenty of practical tips and actionable insights for how you can promote health and good nutrition for employees at work.

The Truth About Nutrition at Work

The positive impacts of cutting out poor nutrition and unhealthy foods might seem obvious but, by looking at the opportunities surrounding better workplace nutrition, we can make it easier to foster healthier diets among team members.

The Advantages of Healthy Eating at Work

Reduced Absenteeism and Ill Health

The impact of a poor diet and bad physical health costs the UK economy around £58 billion a year, and equals employees taking an extra four sick days every 12 months.

Proper nutrition plays a major role in good health among employees. Providing employees with a nutritional environment provides them with the essential vitamins, minerals, and energy needed to support a robust immune system.

This means team members are less susceptible to illnesses and infections, having a significant impact on sickness. Absence and absenteeism being down has an indirect cost benefit by enhancing energy levels and mental clarity (more on this later!).

By prioritising healthy eating habits, organisations can cultivate a workforce that is more resilient to illness. If you're a manager or business owner and want a higher job performance from your employees, consider keeping whole foods such as fresh fruits in the break room.

Reduced Stress and Anxiety

Healthy eating habits are also an essential factor in supporting mental health and wellbeing in the workplace. Inadequate nourishment caused by unhealthy diets can exacerbate stress and anxiety levels among employees. Pre-existing mental health issues are also thought to be exacerbated by poor diets.

Consuming a balanced diet rich in complex carbohydrates found in fresh fruits and vegetables, on the other hand, can help stimulate the production of serotonin. These nutrient dense food choices also support cognitive function and mood regulation.

It goes deeper, though. A study in the British Journal of Health Psychology found that those who ate more fruit and veg reported 34% higher creativity, 31% higher curiosity, and 25% higher overall health and happiness.

By prioritising healthy food habits and promoting nutrition, employers can foster mental wellness and find themselves with happy, healthy employees who are much more prepared to do their jobs.

Boosted Immunity

When employers ditch the vending machines and encourage staff into eating fruits, they can enhance the immune system of their employees. Nutrient rich healthy food comes with essential vitamins and nutrients that help with disease control.

Absence is reduced by good nutrition, enabling organisations to maintain productivity levels and avoid disruptions caused by staffing shortages due to ill health. Additionally, a healthier work environment can contribute to an increase in morale and job satisfaction, with the office being a happier and more enjoyable place to be and employees feeling more valued and cared for.

Weight Management

In 2021, Public Health England found that 26% of adults in England were obese - with 11% of them reporting a diabetes diagnosis from their doctor. Maintaining a healthy weight is crucial for overall health and wellbeing, as excess body weight is linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure. When present in working adults, these diseases massively impact their productivity and attendance - from low morale to health concerns to medical appointments.

With so much of our lives spent at work, the nutritional content of the food choices we make in the office can have a major impact on the future health of employees. This makes it all the more important for healthy food to be on offer in the workplace, promoting health and productivity in both the short and long term.

Fruits

Order an office fruit basket for delivery in London

How to Create and Implement Workplace Health Initiatives

With these facts fresh in the mind, it becomes much easier to encourage staff to take their health and wellbeing seriously. Unhealthy food is everywhere, making concerted effort through nutrition programs is essential to ensure employees aren't relying on processed foods to get them through the workday.

Conduct an Employee Survey

A wellness program is a great way to start cutting down on sugary foods, but testing the waters first is essential. A workplace nutrition program of any kind helps everyone understand their current diet and how it's impacting them, as well as giving the opportunity to find out what kind of health changes may be called for.

Aim to find out this kind of information through your survey questions:

  • How do your team members see their own health and wellbeing? Do they feel as though these things are valued in the workplace?
  • Do your employees feel they have access to stress, physical and mental health, and weight management tools through their job?
  • Do your employees feel provided for in terms of food and nutrition?
  • Would your employees value action aimed at caring for their health and wellbeing?

Educate Your Employees

Encouraging team members to take part in wellness programs or initiatives focused on nutrition is the next step towards a healthier and more productive workplace. One useful strategy is providing resources such as workshops, seminars, or informational sessions on topics related to nutrition, a healthy diet, and the benefits of eating fruit and vegetables. Consider bringing in a professional nutritional therapist or personal trainer in the morning or during a lunch break to teach employees about how nutrition is vital for staying upbeat and energised.

Other tactics could be organising cooking demonstrations for healthy office lunches, ordering deliveries of healthy snacks and fruits for improved workplace health, or giving out healthy diet posters or leaflets to discourage team members from eating fatty foods in the office.

Create a Supportive Environment

By fostering a culture of health and wellness, organisations can empower employees to make healthier food and lifestyle choices, contributing to improved physical health and mental performance.

Creating a supportive atmosphere that prioritises nutritious eating habits over quick, unhealthy food and snack choices is important for overall employee wellbeing. Implementing workplace health promotion initiatives, such as office wellness challenges or healthy cooking competitions, can cultivate a fun and supportive atmosphere.

We've written before about creating healthy workplaces that boost productivity and happiness, but anything from office fruit boxes to walking meetings are good starts to improve workplace nutrition and health.

Continue to Promote Healthy Eating Habits

Continuing to promote nutritious food in the office is essential for maintaining long term productivity. Employers can ensure sustained good eating habits by incorporating regular initiatives and practices that normalise nutritious food choices. This can include organising educational sessions, sharing healthy recipes, or organising communal nutritious food challenges.

By making healthy snacks readily available and accessible, employees are more likely to choose nutritious options throughout their working hours. Ordering office fruit boxes filled with fresh fruits is a convenient and fun way to get team members eating better in the office, and it's a proactive approach that not only supports physical and mental health but contributes to a positive and thriving work environment.

Fruits

Order an office fruit basket for delivery in London

Best Methods for Workplace Nutrition

Prioritising workplace nutrition means a reduction in absenteeism and stress levels, as well as potentially helps ensure long term health for employees. This can be done by implementing workplace health initiatives, ultimately fostering a supportive and healthy environment. Consistently promoting healthier eating habits is essential for improved productivity.

Improve Workplace Nutrition: Ripe London

For organisations seeking convenient workplace nutrition, office fruit boxes from Ripe London offer a simple and effective way to provide employees with access to fresh and nutritious snacks. By incorporating these offerings into any workplace environment, employers can boost nutrition initiatives and promote health within their team.

Take the first step towards a healthier workplace with an office fruit box from Ripe London today!

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