When we think of healthful lifestyle choices we generally consider requirements for a healthy diet and regular vigorous exercise. We want to be sure we're eating a wide variety of foods from the p ...View Article
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|What Do You Eat at Work?|
The vast majority of us sit throughout the day at work. Exercising regularly - even if it's just a few minutes at a time throughout the day - helps to keep a person's metabolic rate, at an optimal level and therefore the muscles continue to burn calories even while sitting.
Conversely, when we sit for hours at a time without getting up to move around, our metabolic rates drop. That is why taking short exercise breaks often throughout the day may be even more beneficial than performing a longer workout once a day - if it means you barely move for hours at a time during the rest of the day.
If you prepare a healthy dinner, try making a bit extra and bring the leftovers with you to work for an easy lunch. A salad can be a simple solution, adding some grilled chicken or turkey for protein.
Whole milk organic yogurt is a good choice for a snack that will satisfy your hunger longer than anything out of the vending machine.
Bring zippered plastic bags containing organic cheddar or other cheese, and an organic apple, banana, or other fresh fruit - preferably something in season.
Energy bars can also be a good choice for a snack at work, but make sure to read the ingredients and avoid anything with artificial sweeteners such as aspartame or sucralose (Splenda). Ideally they should have at least 30% protein to keep your blood sugar level.
Are you like most typical office workers who sit for hours on end in front of a computer screen? If so, probably one of the most important things you can do for your health is get up and move around every 30-60 minutes, even if your exercise break is very brief. Fitting in exercise doesn't have to be a big interruption during your day. Just walk around your home or office for a few minutes, or even just march in place or do a quick stretching routine.
This is also a good time to give your eyes a break. Your eyes become fatigued when you look at something at a static distance for too long. Make a point to look out a window if you can and focus on the details you see. Look around your house or office and focus on items at varying distances to exercise the lens in your eyes. Looking at trees outside and other natural surroundings are not only pleasant and relaxing, but can also help your mind be refreshed and energized.
Stand up straight, making sure your knees and shoulders are relaxed, and tighten your abdominal muscles for a strong core while you do the following stretches:
You don't have to do all of these during each break, unless you would like to. Pay attention to which exercises feel good to you and which areas of your body have the most tension. Usually just a few repetitions will be sufficient, and taking regular mini-breaks throughout the day can make a big difference. It only takes a few minutes to get your circulation going and your joints and muscles loosened up.
Mini-exercise breaks also give your mind a rest, and you will probably find that you have renewed mental vigor and greater clarity when you get back to work. Exercise breaks are especially helpful when you are struggling with a problem. You may notice that giving your mind a break while you perform a short bout of exercise is just what you need to come up with a solution.