Wellness in the workplace has become an important topic since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Some recurring wellness themes are self-care, quality sleep, exercise, etc. One topic that we should focus more on is maintaining good nutrition in the workplace. March happens to be National Nutrition Month, making it even more important to highlight good nutrition and how this can positively influence the workplace.
Benefits of Good Nutrition in the Workplace
- Increased productivity.
- Increased energy.
- Decrease in sick days and time off.
- Lower rates of chronic illness.
- Lower stress rates.
- Higher retention and loyalty.
Why Good Nutrition is Important Yet Sometimes Difficult to Achieve
According to the Institute for Health Metrics, poor nutrition has nearly three times the impact on health as lack of fitness. While more than two-thirds of the U.S. population is classified as obese and 86 million Americans struggle with pre-diabetes, the need for better, and more accessible nutrition education is evident.
A survey conducted by Sight and Life among employees highlighted the main challenges workers face to eat healthier:
- Easiest food choices aren’t always the healthiest.
- “I don’t always have time to buy and prepare healthy food.”
- “It’s too expensive.”
- “The people I’m around don’t eat healthy.”
All these reasons and more are barriers to better nutrition. However, there are solutions. There are plenty of ways that employers can provide opportunities to employees for better nutrition. If you are an employee, there are also ways that you can support your colleagues. Keep in mind that nutrition can be a difficult subject for some people. Offer your support and resources but remain understanding that everyone has different lifestyles and health situations.
What Employers Can Do
- Offer and share resources.
- When food is served at an office event, make it nutritious!
- Provide plenty of space for employees to store snacks and lunches.
- Review what snacks are in the vending machines.
- Work with local businesses or your wellness teams to create informational events and webinars surrounding good nutrition.
Fuel your future this March by sharing this with your network.