By Damilola Faustino
It is a norm today for office workers to eat lunch at their desks. But even if you’re eating all the right things—a healthy blend of fiber, protein, and fat, you’re still doing your body a disservice by staying in your seat. Here are five reasons you should steer clear of eating at your desk and opt to dine somewhere—pretty much anywhere—else:
You eat more
You know how sometimes you start eating lunch and then, a few minutes later, you realise you’re on your last bite? This is distracted eating or mindless eating, By eating while preoccupied with TV, Internet, or a spreadsheet, your body and brain don’t properly process the amount of food you consume. As a result, the hormone is often late to signal the brain that it’s time to stop eating, meaning you take in more calories than you need to feel satisfied.
You make poorer food choices
People who sit at their desk for lunch are more apt to consume fattening foods all day long. That means less-healthy choices at lunch and more trips to the restaurants later in the day. That’s hundreds of extra calories, all because you didn’t want to push back your desk chair and find a new place to graze!
You sit for longer
Sure, you may have to walk to and from the office kitchen to bring your lunch back to your desk. But if you eat in the office lunchroom, you might stop to chat with a colleague in the hallway or otherwise break up your sitting time.
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If you find an offsite venue to eat, you’ll do even more for your health by adding extra steps. Even standing next to your desk to eat is a lot better than sitting at it, although you may get some funny looks.
Your brainstorming becomes blank
Stuck on a problem at work? Getting up for a walk during the day—say, on your way to lunch—can actually help you return to the office feeling refreshed.
You miss out on socialising
Eating away from your desk makes it more likely that you’ll socialise, something that is good for your happiness and your health. Research has found that some of the benefits of socialising are similar to that of exercise—you usually feel better after a good bout, have lower stress and blood pressure levels, and you may be less likely to suffer from depression.
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