Lurking in just about every corner of your office are temptations that can make you gain weight quickly and without even realizing it. Here are some traps that can be particularly unhealthy, as well as how to avoid them and protect yourself from the pitfalls.
Short or Rushed Lunch Breaks
While we should have at least a half-hour for a lunch break, we often sacrifice lunch time when work responsibilities are piling up. A short or rushed lunch break doesn’t give you adequate time, and you may end up purchasing the fastest food possible, which is usually also the most unhealthy. Even if you bring your own lunch, rushing through it doesn’t give your body enough opportunity to signal that it’s full, and you can end up overeating and consuming much more food than you would have if you took your time while eating your lunch. Try to get a full lunch break in every day so you have more time to make healthy choices.
The Office Vending Machines
Lots of office buildings have vending machines, and their lure can be incredibly strong. Hardly anyone can resist the temptation to indulge in vending machine snacks and sodas for long. Even just one snack from the vending machine every day can cause you to gain weight or derail your diet, so you must prohibit yourself from using the machines. This is easier said than done, but some tactics may help. Bring your own healthier snacks to work, and don’t bring along spare change or cash. During lunch, try to eat a hearty meal with a good mix of protein, carbs, and healthy fats, which will keep you fuller longer and help you curb your snacking appetite.
Special Occasion Pastries
Some offices seem to have extra cake, cookies, or doughnuts around all the time, and staying away from the free goodies is very hard. If it’s someone’s birthday at the office and a cake is brought in, you might feel obligated to join the celebration and have a piece. Other things like special work achievements often seem to merit pastries, too. How can you deal? Don’t worry about offending anyone, and politely decline a piece by saying you’re trying to eat healthier. If you do have a piece, make it a very small one so you can have just a small taste.
If you eat at a cafeteria at your workplace, making healthy choices can be difficult, especially if you’re able to eat for free. Seeing so many choices can be overwhelming, and you might pick indulgent choices and end up gaining weight. Servers might also provide portions that are too big, or you might take too much food. Be very conscious about the choices you make in the cafeteria and your portion sizes, or your waistline can end up expanding before you know it. Also consider asking the cafeteria staff for nutritional information if it’s not already posted, so that you can assess the calories and ingredients of the food you’re eating.