Try these 3 tips to be healthier at work

Try these 3 tips to be healthier at work

Do you ever feel like your long work hours are standing in the way of the healthy lifestyle you desire?

If so, it may be because many behaviors associated with high productivity and success in modern work environments are also considered risky when it comes to good health.

“When practiced consistently and over long periods of time, sedentary work habits and stress-related snacking may move you up the corporate ladder. But they can also pave the way to heart disease and diabetes,” says Dr. Prentiss Taylor, an internal medicine physician at Advocate Trinity Hospital in Chicago and medical director of Advocate at Work fitness/wellness coaching.

The good news is hard work doesn’t have to come at the expense of good health. To keep work from getting in the way of your goals, Dr. Prentiss offers the following three solutions to add a healthy balance to your work routine:

  1. Limit e-chatting: Instead of connecting with office mates via email or instant messaging, walk over for a brief face-to-face. If you work remotely, try connecting by phone and pacing near your desk while you chat. Not only will this tip keep you sitting and standing throughout the day, but a more personal touch could also help strengthen your relationships at work.
  2. Create a healthy snack pantry: When we’re feeling stressed or lackluster, we tend to crave the comfort of high carb snacks or an energy burst from sugary, caffeinated drinks. Stay on track with your health goals by stocking up on a variety of healthy snacks. Having an assortment of plant-based sweet, crunchy and creamy options – as well as baked tortilla or pita chips – will help you avoid unhealthy temptations in the office vending machine.
  3. Plan a healthy staycation: Plan a mental health day that incorporates your routine check-up with your doctor. First, make your doctor’s appointment. Then, consider scheduling a relaxing massage, a long lunch with friends, taking in a matinee or visiting an exhibit you haven’t had time to see. By arranging a day of fun, you’ll be less likely to sacrifice your appointment when pressing things arise at work.

Dr. Taylor recommends sticking to a healthy eating plan, sitting and standing at least five times and taking short breaks for stretching and indoor/outdoor walks every work day to support your healthy goals while on the job.

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One Comment

  1. Since I would assume the vast majority of Advocate workers are not in the office, I wish that these articles would focus on us; the nurses, technicians, cleaning staff, cafeteria staff, etc, that has very short lunches/breaks, work shifts, are on our feet all day long, etc. I don’t have desk space to “stock up a healthy snack pantry” Sure, ok, I get the doctor visit thing. Just commenting that on the whole, the healthy workplace type articles generally miss an awful lot of us and wonder just whom the “Advocate at Work” is supposed to benefit.

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About the Author

Cassie Richardson
Cassie Richardson

Cassie Richardson, health enews contributor, is regional coordinator on the Public Affairs team for Advocate Health Care and Aurora Health Care. She has more than 10 years of experience in health care communications, marketing, media and public relations. Cassie is a fan of musical theater and movies. When she’s not spreading the word about health and wellness advancements, she enjoys writing fiction.