Monkey Business – Workplace Lunching Strategies

November 30th, 2010 No Comments Tags: , , , , , , ,

I am continuing on the “Monkey Business” theme to build strategies for healthier workplaces. We working folk spend so much dang time at our places of employment, we could really be more productive if our surroundings supported us better. Revisit this series posted: September 30, October 11, 25 and November 8.

In an ideal world it would be perfect to bring a lunch to work that’s balanced, healthy and economical. For many, this is simply a pipe dream to achieve some day down the road. Alas, we don’t live in an ideal world, but a real one. You can; however, eat well at the cafeteria, food court or surrounding restaurants near work with a bit of planning. As I often say, together we will overcome!!

Plan Ahead – Your eating regimen works out better when you plan ahead. The best time to do this is when you’re not feeling hungry. Somehow reason prevails during this time of satiety. Those hunger pangs can wreak havoc on your plan the hungrier you become. Deciding while in control is key.

We’ve Got the Power - Knowledge is power, right? These days there’s a multitude of food information about chain restaurant menu items on the internet. Surf yourself silly and read up on all of this ahead of time. Store in your memory bank some acceptable choices from the places you frequent so you’re equipped with options even when caught off guard.

Food Court Press - If you nosh in a group it’s strategic to go to the food court so everyone can scatter to get their food then reconvene to mange. There are many acceptable choices at the international outlets – pita and hummus, Japanese stir fry, you’re not a geek to choose Creek, be an Italian stallion, Mexican, Lebanese, Indian and more.

Lead Don’t Follow – Don’t be a sheep and follow the crowd. Make your decision and stick with it.

Share & Share Alike – If you do want a devilish delight like nachos and cheese or French fries, share these in a group and partake in some. These often are very calorie laden and add up to your day’s energy quota at one go.

Think About Your Drink - Pay special attention to what you’re washing your meal down with. All foods fit and your beverages are considered food as well. Be aware of the calories in your bevy’s. There are plenty of no-cal alternatives out there so it makes sense to be choosy. Mineral waters are a perfect accompaniment with any meal. If you do choose the 32 ounce juice smoothy because you think it’s healthier learn what the calorie content is. As I’ve said before all calories count even those from healthy foods.  Many fancy coffees pack of high powered energy punch. Just beware and choose wisely.

Workplace Policies – You may want to advocate for your fellow employees with the big cheese at work about having healthier options and policies at work. If your team is growing (and not in number) because of the toxic environment laden with unhealthy food, this could affect the company’s productivity and bottom line, right? You’ll certainly get your boss’ undivided attention presenting this notion using these terms. Speak their lingo. You can suggest, for instance, they make “the healthy choice the easy choice” by subsidizing the salad bar making it affordable. The gang may be going for fries and gravy more often because it’s so cheap and filling.

We spend a lot of time at work and that environment can certainly affect our health and well being. Why not for the better? Healthy work policies are a win-win-win proposition that help everyone. Your work culture can make a paradigm shift. It’s so much easier when you’re all in this together. Go team!!

What kind of “Monkey Business” policies do you have going on at your place of work? We’d love to know…….

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