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We spend the majority of our lives at our workplace. At the best of times the workplace provides avenues to socialise, derive achievement and provide a pathway for personal and professional growth. Spending that many hours of our life in a workplace also means that is the place where the majority of our unhealthy habits manifest and magnify.

Workplace wellbeing that shines a light on health practices while at the workplace provide a way for organisations to be a part of investing in their teams at a fundamental level of health.

Spotlight on healthy eating

Encouraging healthy eating is an important part of maintaining a healthy workplace. Yet many workplaces have a culture of rushed lunches, lunches at desks while working, snacking on unhealthy options and consuming more caffeine than water to provide energy and focus.

There are several ways to encourage employees to eat healthy, including:

  • Offering healthy food options in the office. Provide employees with snacks that encourage your employees to eat fresh fruit, nuts, wholegrain and energy enhancing foods and drinks
  • Encourage staff to take full lunchtime breaks. Appoint lunchtime mascots to encourage everyone to take a break.
  • Stock up the pantry with well thought through options, purchase food from health stores so that meetings and breaks have these options.
  • If possible, offer some sort of space where you can take a meal break during the day. Generate interest in your teams for them to share their latest mealtime spots.

Encourage movement during work.

Physiotherapists, Chiropractors and Remedial Massage therapists will attest to the change in posture and muscle tension related ailments. With the advance of portable devices and laptops, remote working and high reliance on digital communication, our teams are frozen in unhealthy positions. Consider:

  • Have an ergonomics specialist assess your space and provide tips for your staff to improve their physical health while at work
  • Strategically place common workplace appliances/utilities in a space which would require some movement. For example, printers can be placed on the opposite side of the room.
  • Initiate walk and talk meetings. Not all meetings need to be at a desk. Co-workers can be encouraged to head out into the fresh air and sun to meet
  • Provide a stand and stretch station. Consider playing a 2-3 minute Youtube video that sets an example of how to take a break every few hours to stand and stretch.

Healthy work practices provide our teams to spend the majority of their hours taking care of the foundations of good health and mental health. Encouraged as a whole, the culture can shift to making small changes that lead to lasting health outcomes.