Healthy Eating Week takes place from the 12th-16th June – a week set aside by the British Nutrition Foundation, which aims to help everyone make small changes to improve their lifestyles, health, and wellbeing. Each year the BFN release a new set of health aims, and the message for this year is ‘Healthy Eating Week – Find Your Healthier You’. This theme highlights the importance of supporting others and yourself to take steps to promote a healthier lifestyle.
The main aim of Healthy Eating Week is to try to make a small change or try something new each day. By doing this, we will eventually be leading a healthier lifestyle. Eating a balanced diet with food from every food type is a good start. A study by Tim Spector suggests we should be aiming for 30 different plant based foods each week. That may feel like a lot, but when you take into account vegetables, fruit, seeds, nuts, beans, spices, and herbs you eat, it feels a little more achievable.
Healthy Eating Week - In the Workplace
Considering the fact that most people eat at least one meal or snack while at work, its crucial to encourage healthy eating in the workplace, A study found that the more fruits and vegetables people consumed (up to 7 portions), the happier, more engaged, and more creative they tended to be.
When you eat and how often you eat are just as important as eating well and getting the right nutrients in your diet. It’s important not to skip meals or leave it too long between eating healthy snacks as your glucose will drop, making it harder to concentrate. Eating the first meal of the day can encourage your body to burn more calories throughout the day and help contain rising cortisol levels which are high in the early morning. High levels of cortisol can make you feel anxious or jittery. Skipping meals has a number of negative effects – you’re more likely to overeat at other times, you’re more likely to gain weight, mood is negatively impacted, and concentration suffers as your blood sugar and energy declines.
A high carb meal, such as pasta, bread, and cereals release glucose quickly which gives you a burst of energy followed by a slump, draining our motivation and attention. Meanwhile, a high-fat meal provides more sustained energy, but requires our digestive system to work harder, reducing oxygen levels in the brain and making us groggy. Fruit and vegetables contain vital nutrients that encourage the production of dopamine which plays a role in the experience of curiosity, motivation, and engagement. They also contain antioxidants that improve memory and enhanced mood. If you regularly forget lunch or snacks, have a desk drawer or locker stash of emergency foods. Store nuts, seeds, canned soups, ready-made pasta packs, two-minute rice cups, canned tuna and salmon and tubs of fruit. A good way to ensure you eat a healthy lunch this healthy eating week is to plan ahead. By building a routine, you’re prepared for meals and choices with healthier options. It also makes your eating decisions a lot easier before you get hungry. Make a simple dish that you can take to work. This could include routinely buying healthy snacks like carrot sticks, nuts, or seeds.
Healthy Eating Week - Remote Working
Despite the benefits of healthy eating, many adults do not regularly engage in such behaviours, particularly young adults. In the UK, adults are recommended to have 30g of fibre each day but are currently only eating, on average, 19g a day and when working from home, keeping track of your nutrition can be difficult.
A study by the BNF found one third of people (33%) state they have included more fruits and vegetables in their diets. Healthy Eating Week is a great opportunity to tackle your pantry cleaning project you’ve been staring at for months. Empty the cupboards that contain high-sodium, high-sugar foods, if they aren’t in your house you can’t consume them! Fill your fridge with fresh fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins, and stock your pantry with ready-to-grab bags of nuts and pre-portioned, high-fibre snacks.
Try to avoid working in or near the kitchen, you might be tempted to wander over and check the fridge. Plan out your day according to the foods and beverages you need and try to take as much with you into your home office as possible. Be intentional about avoiding the kitchen which isn’t easy when working from home. A good way to achieve this is by brining snacks and lunch into your workspace or set up a coffee pot in your office if that’s what is causing you to enter the kitchen multiple times a day.
Decide what you’re going to eat for the day, this will help you save money and time on food and is a great way to start improving your food choices. This also will ensue that you aren’t tempted to indulge in quick, unhealthy foods. Many remote workers report meal prepping on the weekends can help nutrition stay on track during the week.
How Wellity Can Support You
The cost of living crisis continues to have an impact on the affordability of healthy diets for so many of us. New research conducted by the UK’s largest weight-loss organisation Slimming World revealed half of UK adults (51%) say spiralling costs make it harder to afford healthy food choices. Without the right support, the financial crisis could make it even more difficult for people to manage their weight and health.
Our session ‘Fuelling Your Body on the 9-5’ will help you discover how to fuel your body for energy and sustainable performance. It will explore practical tips for eating in a healthy way, particular for those with busy lives who sometimes find it challenging to prioritise their nutritional intake.
· Identifying the fundamentals of eating well
· Busting myths and food rumours
· Establishing your own goals with addressing eating habits
· Creating a plan for fuelling your own body, your own way
For more information on other training titles we offer surrounding Healthy Eating Week 2023, contact our team at firstname.lastname@example.org for details.