Nutrition and healthy eating is probably the biggest subject that we encounter during an employee health screening programme and at Healthy Performance, many of our health assessors could dedicate a whole day to the subject if they had the time. At Healthy Performance Towers, we love our food (he says while eating a Salmon quinoa and raw veg salad) and enjoy educating the employees of the UK on how to eat better.
Our top tips to improve employee health long term and change eating habits:
- Never miss your breakfast
You have probably heard one of these sayings- ‘Breakfast is the most important meal of the day’ or ‘Breakfast like a king, lunch like prince and dine like a pauper’. Both of these are really good advice but it’s the bit about breakfast that we want to emphasise. Starting your day with a good meal will help to start off your metabolism and give you energy to get out of the door with a spring in your step. A low sugar breakfast that contains fruit or veg and a source of protein is ideal. For example Sardines on toast with a couple of raw tomatoes or an apple.
- Eat lots of fresh fruit and veg
5 a day is not a new concept and it is not as hard as you might think to get them all in. Did you know the number recommended changes in different countries, Australia has 7 a day (5 veg + 2 fruit), Denmark uses 6 a day and in Ireland its 4 a day. The main message is simple, eat lots of fresh fruit and veg and have a range of colours and textures.
- Keep well hydrated
The amount of water we need on average is 2 litres per day. This will help to keep your concentration levels up, reduce fatigue, ensure muscles can contract properly and can help you from feeling hungry
- Eat two portions of fish a week
At least two portions per week with one of them being an oily fish like salmon, trout, mackerel, fresh tuna and sardines. Oily fish doesn’t include greasy battered fish from the chippy!
- Make your snacks healthy
Substitute crisps and chocolate bars for easy snacks like fruit (aiming for the 5 a day) and nuts and raw vegetables, rice cakes, yogurts, raisins. Other healthy snacks can be left-overs from that healthy evening meal you made, homemade oat and banana cookies or grilled cold meats.
- Planning is the key success
Making a meal plan for the week ahead is a brilliant way to make sure you don’t grab that take away on the way home or miss a meal. You can save money by only buying what you need for the meals on the plan and you will reduce food waste too!
Improving employee health and their nutritional habits long term is about getting a balance between how much energy they can eat and burn up through activity and also providing their body with the nutrients it needs to stay amazing!