Weight issues plague many of us. Lifestyle, work, stress and even medications don't help matters. You don't want your job to be the death of you!
A 2012 article in the English medical journal The Lancet reported that obesity is now killing three times as many people as malnutrition and nearly 36% of the United States is considered to be overweight. Obesity is definitely a serious problem of which you don't want to be a statistic. So, how does one stop weight gain when we spend so much time working?
Here are 7 things that you can do at work to stop weight gain. This should get you off to a good start to a healthier lifestyle!
1. Find Excuses to Move
You have multiple options here. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Park farther away from the building and walk. Spend your break time walking or exercising. The point is, get creative and find time in your busy schedule to move and get some kind of exercise in. The National Academy of Sciences recently changed their guidelines from 30 minutes of exercise per day to 60, and getting in a little here in there will help you attain this goal.
2. Eat to Lose
You might have heard that eating more frequently can actually help you lose weight. This is because you'll eat less during your meal time if you've snacked during the day. And we don’t mean chips and soda! For example, carrots can satisfy your urge to have something crunchy just as much as those chips and also give you 113% of your daily dose of vitamin A, plus carotene, a beneficial antioxidant, and many nutrients. Trade that soda for a refreshing glass of water, and you have a non-fat, virtually no-calorie snack. Eat a healthy breakfast, bring a healthy lunch, and you'll be set up for success!
3. Rethink Your After-Work Routine
Do you go to happy hour with your friends after work or to grab a pizza? Or do you head to the taco joint or to McBurger’s for a fast dinner? This is the fastest way to failure! You need to rethink all of your habits during and after work if you want to succeed. If you're too tired to cook at home, choose a healthier, fast food option or, better yet, go to a restaurant and have a healthy meal, perhaps a glass of wine, and unwind from the day.
4. Increase Your Calcium
Research by the University of Tennessee found that eating three servings of calcium-rich foods every day can significantly help reduce weight gain and speed up weight loss by 50 to 70%! So incorporate dairy into your snacking and lunch routines. Greek yogurt with fruit; cheese and crackers; or cottage cheese are all great ways to get your calcium and snack on as well.
5. Avoid Tech Overload
Do you control your tech or does your tech control you? Computers, tablets, and smartphones are technological marvels but we have become a society obsessed. You have multiple opportunities during your workday to exercise, so hand-deliver more items in person, exchange your chair for a stability ball, or walk over a tell a message to a co-worker instead of using an IM. You just might find that you can get in your 60 minutes of exercise per day, potentially all from work!
6. Find Active Ways to Commute
Did you know that the average American spends 25.4 minutes on round trip commuting per day? If you are among this number, consider dusting off your bike and using it to commute to work. Or, take a bus or train, as you'll need to do some walking with public transportation. Finding other ways to commute will also remove the temptation to eat unhealthy junk food as you drive.
7. Stop the Stress!
Stress, among all else, is one of the top reasons we gain weight. Stress triggers your body to produce more levels of cortisol, a stress hormone, and, in turn, triggers sugar and fat cravings. A German study found that stress can cause you to be at higher risk for developing Type 2 diabetes. Find ways to learn how to relax during your workday, such as deep breathing exercises, meditation, or simple yoga stretches—anything that helps you fight stress (besides eating).
Research has shown that, if you sit at your desk for six hours a day, you're twice as likely to be overweight than those who only sit for 45 minutes per day. If you fall into the “desk set” category, you can find multiple ways to incorporate activity into your daily routine. This, along with eating better, will help you in your quest to stop gaining weight and you might even see weight loss!