BBC poll finds half of UK workers don't stop for lunch
A poll, commissioned by BBC Breakfast show, found that 54% of office workers regularly work through their lunch break.
The poll, by ComRes a polling company, commissioned by BBC Breakfast show, has found that more than 50% of office workers say they often work through their lunch break.
The British Dietetic Association (BDA) the UK’s leading organisation for food and nutrition professionals is less than impressed by the findings.
The BDA’s Nutrition in the Workplace programme helps support employers throughout the UK to improve employees’ health and wellbeing , in addition to improving levels of sick days taken. By looking at nutrition and wellbeing in the workplace, this helps boost employees’ health and improve their performance, which is fundamental to any employer.
Speaking about the results of the BBC Breakfast poll, Alison Clark, Spokesperson for the BDA, said:
“Of course, from time to time we have all sat at our desk and worked through lunchtime or two. However, this should not be allowed to become the norm. Indeed, eating lunch at your desk should be an occasional occurrence.
“Eating at your desk can be a fast track to piling on unwanted weight. For example, it is far too easy to partake in a bit of ‘mindless eating’ while working away at your desk. While your mind is fixed firmly on tasks at hand, your actual hand is automatically dipping into a whole raft of treats lying around on your desk. Also, working through lunchtimes often means a quick dash to the local sandwich shop without enough time to properly read food labels and understand what you are about to eat and this type of ‘grab and go’ habit can soon add up.
“It’s not just about weight. Wellbeing is also very important to maintain. Vitamin D, which is crucial to bone health (enables calcium to strengthen bones), is very hard indeed to get the levels we all need by food alone. The vast majority of our Vitamin D intake comes from direct sunlight on our skin. By stepping away from your desk and sitting outside for 10 minutes can make a really big difference to Vitamin D levels in your body.
“On average, someone with a fulltime job will spend around 60% of their time in the workplace and will eat and drink at least a third of their daily calorie allowance during this time. Too often, stress and certain cultures in the workplace takes priority over healthy food choices and ensuring that employees’ health and wellbeing needs are met. This is a very important issue that all employers should address.”
The BDA’s Nutrition in the Workplace covers topics such as:
+Good Mood Food.
+How to Sustain Yourself Through a Busy Working Day-The Healthy Way!
+Eating Well for Cancer Prevention – the Facts!
+Food Demos – showcasing simple, yet nutritious meals, illustrating how easy it is to make quick, healthy (and tasty!) meals with everyday ingredients that can be stored in the top draw of your desk.
+Nutrition Clinic Days – offering 1-to-1 private consultations with a dietitian.
The BDA has also pulled together some top tips that readers can start following immediately today:
+Snack on fruit during the day. If you don’t have access to fresh, try dried fruit and keep a supply in the top drawer of your desk e.g. dried apricots or tinned fruit even.
+Take the stairs instead of the lift.
+Oatcakes are great snacks, full of slow release energy and individually wrapped, so you don’t overindulge.
+Take healthy packed lunches, perhaps using leftovers from your tea the night before.
+Check labels for lower fat alternatives.
+Stay hydrated and be conscious of calories from sugary drinks. An easy way to check you’re well hydrated is if your urine is a pale straw colour.
+Vegetable soup can make you feel fuller and can add to your 5-a-day.
+If you’re stressed try to keep your blood sugar levels stable by eating regular, healthy meals.