Let's face it, most of us aren’t eating right. The majority of adults fail to eat the minimum five daily portions of fruit and vegetables recommended by the World Health Organization. For those with unhealthy lifestyle habits, switching to healthier ones can seem like a daunting prospect. With all of the deadlines, responsibilities and personal commitments life throws at us, healthy eating isn't always number one priority. Accessible and affordable healthy food programmes at work can be a great to solution to this problem. We spend a huge chunk of our lives at work so it makes total sense that the workplace should be the perfect place to start promoting healthy eating. Companies should be aware of of the wide range of benefits healthy eating in the workplace can have. Read on to learn more about these benefits.
1. Less absenteeism
One very obvious benefit of an office full of healthy employees is that these people miss work less often. Frequent absences in the workplace negatively impact productivity and increases the amount companies have to fork out on health care. Simple fact - employees who eat healthily are less likely to get sick. These same employees also recover from illness much more quickly and are at less risk of serious illnesses. Helping your team be healthier will mean a lot less sick days.
2. More energy and productivity
Another benefit of healthy eating in the workplace is having more energetic employees. This increased energy leads to better concentration at work and higher productivity. The better your focus and attitude, the more effective you are in your role. An employee who is healthy and fit is generally more confident in themselves and more likely to positively impact office culture. Healthy foods boost your brain power and help everyone to have a more successful day.
3. It makes people happy
Being given the option of healthy food for lunch and breakfast will in itself make employees happy!They are likely to see it as an extra perk of the job. Food choices like salads, nuts, yogurt and fresh fruit and vegetables are a great low cost options which can easily be made available to the team in the form of meals or snacks. In addition, in-house dining areas offer more than just a food service, they are a social hub and can create a sense of belonging and engagement.
4. Less stress more success
Many healthy foods such as spinach, blueberries and avocados actually reduce stress hormones, such as cortisol. Food and drink rich in vitamin C also protects the immune system while reducing stress hormones. Stress in the workplace is a dangerous and counterproductive force and can cause employees to be much less effective at their roles. It can even make them doubt their abilities. Increasing healthy food options will help to reduce stress levels in your office.
Attracting and retaining top talent is a challenge for every company. By actively promoting good health among workers and creating a positive environment for work, you could drastically reduce employee turnover and recruitment costs. Employees who feel valued and well looked after are much more committed to their workplace and less likely to jump ship at the first attractive offer that comes their way.
It is clear that there are a huge number of benefits associated with healthy eating in the workplace. This goes hand in hand with employee wellness which we recently dicussed here. A corporate meal programme is a great way to make sure your employees are getting all the nutrients they need to thrive and work hard. You should also make sure that there are options to meet every dietary restriction (e.g. vegan, coeliac, paleo) alongside all of the healthy choices. Companies who genuinely care for their employees will be interested in creating a positive, safe and healthy environment. Offering healthy food options is a great way of showing you care. You can increase morale, improve your employees’ health and positively impact your business.