Living Green Magazine recently posted an article listing 5 foods that may contribute to stress at work. While none of these should come as a surprise, it is worth repeating them here. In short, the foods mentioned were:
Foods high in caffeine
This one is pretty self-explanatory, and I have written previously about the link between coffee and anxiety here. The article notes, sensibly, that the harm from caffeine results from over-consumption. We all know coffee and other caffeinated drinks are stimulants, which could result in the jitters or irritability. Practice moderation and you should be fine.
Food packed with salt
Sodium hides in all manner of places. Even if you are diligent and never touch the salt grinder, this little beauty is found in everything from fruit juice, to sandwich meats and every day snacks. Popular sodium bombs in the office include deli meats (think ham, turkey), along with packs of chips and fries.
Why is sodium an issue? It is well established that too much sodium causes the body to retain fluids, which may lead to hypertension. Ditch the salt by sticking with plain, whole foods, as close to their natural state as possible. Think salads with lean protein and leafy greens, or a simple sandwich or wrap packed with your favourite vegetables.
Again – duh. You don’t need to be a rocket scientist to figure this one out. In the workplace however, avoiding junk food can be a difficult task. Every second day it seems that a colleague is having a birthday/leaving/celebrating something, which of course, calls for cake. On top of this is the constant temptation that emanates from the cookie jar or office vending machine, which is hard to ward off when the 3:00pm munchies hit.
To avoid this one, keep a bunch of healthy snacks in your desk draw, or even better, leave them on your desk within eyesight. You will be more likely to snack on that crunchy apple you packed from home if you can see it in front of you. Other great healthy snacks are unsalted nuts or carrot sticks with dips.
Another no-brainer. The article notes however that eating a fatty meal may heighten the unhealthy effects of stress on the heart.
The workplace can invite a plethora of opportunities to drink – from networking events to the office Christmas party. The worst part? The dreaded hangover. Hangovers impeded productivity like the plague. Stay sensible when drinking. Again, everything in moderation.
Working life is stressful enough without these added issues in your day. These simple but obvious tips may just save you from an additional and unwanted worry.