A recent study found that chronic job stress contributes to lack of exercise, unhealthy eating habits and a general sedentary lifestyle, oftentimes leading to obesity. The study suggests that the only way to combat these negative effects of stress on your health and life is with exercise.
This study further proves the argument that businesses and companies need to devote some of their time, energy and resources into wellness programs for employees. During the current economic downturn, employees who survive layoffs don’t escape from the stress surrounding these changes in staff. Employers need to incorporate wellness programs, including good nutrition options and opportunities for employees to take part in physical activities during the day.
Everyone is feeling the added pressure these days and this stress can take its toll on your mind and body. Finding simple, effective ways to control this stress and prevent it from leaving a lasting, negative impact on your life is crucial.
I find that when I am sitting at my desk all day, consumed with a stressful task or job, the last thing I am thinking about is exercising or eating a nutritious, well-balanced meal. Typically, what I am thinking is, I hope I make it out of here at a reasonable hour and what can I buy/eat that will be quick and easy. Unfortunately, quick and easy foods tend to be the worst ones for you. I have recently been reading Michael Pollan‘s writing on food and nutrition and one piece of advice he distills in Food Rules is, “It’s not food if it arrives through the window of your car.” But there are many things that you can put into your daily diet that are quick and nutritious. For example, have vegetables cut and waiting in a ziploc baggy in your refrigerator. Pair carrots, celery, mushrooms and cucumbers with dips and it easily replaces a bag of chips. Another simple dish that I find works extremely well if I am pressed for time or getting home at later hours is pasta with fresh parmesan cheese, oil and pepper. It only takes about 8 minutes to boil water and that is all this dish requires. Plus, the added benefit of the serotonin boosting power of carbohydrates might just help ease your end-of-day stress.