June - Health in the Workplace

Pineapple next to computer on table

June - Health in the Workplace

Welcome to the Nutrition Corner!  As we all know, maintaining a nutritious diet is essential for a healthy lifestyle, and it can be especially challenging during the workweek.  The food we eat has a significant impact on our brain and body functions, which both need the right fuel to function at their best.  Keep reading for tips on how to incorporate health and fitness into your workday!

1. Start with a Balanced Breakfast

It’s cliche, but breakfast just may be the most important meal of the day!  It helps to kickstart your metabolism and provide the energy your brain and body needs to function.  Aim for a balanced breakfast that includes protein, unsaturated fats, and carbohydrates in the form of whole grains and/or fruit.  Some options include oatmeal with nuts and fruit, a smoothie with protein powder, or eggs with whole-grain toast.  Want to prepare your breakfast ahead of time?  Check out these simple, nutritious, and delicious overnight oat variations.

Eggs on avocado toast

2. Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate!

Hydration is essential for maintaining optimal cognitive and bodily functions.  Aim to drink at least eight glasses of water per day.  If you are not a fan of plain water, try adding some sliced fruit or cucumber for flavor.

3. Choose Nutrient-Dense Snacks

Nutritious snacks can provide a quick boost of energy during the workday.  Opt for snacks that are high in protein and/or fiber, such as nuts, seeds, fresh fruit, or vegetables.  Try to reduce consumption of processed foods and beverages with added sugars, as these can lead to energy crashes.  Not sure where to start?  Check out these ideas for simple yet nutritious workplace snacks.

Fruits on plate

4. Take Active Breaks

Sitting for long periods of time can be detrimental to your health.  Taking short breaks throughout the workday to stretch, walk, or do some light exercise can help improve circulation and reduce stress.  Try taking a 10-15 minute walk during your lunch break, or do some simple stretches at your desk.

5. Make Nutritious Lunch Choices

Eating a nutrient-dense lunch can help you maintain your energy levels throughout the day.  Choose options that are high in protein and fiber, such as a salad with grilled chicken, a sandwich on whole-grain bread, or a quinoa bowl with vegetables.

Veggies on plate

6. Fuel Your Brain with Omega-3’s

Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for brain function.  Incorporating foods high in omega-3’s, like salmon, walnuts, and/or flax and chia seeds, into your diet can help improve memory and cognitive function.

7. Support Your Mental Health

Mental health is just as important as physical health.  Try taking brief mindfulness or meditation breaks throughout the day to give your mind a rest.  UC Davis also offers workshops and drop-in support groups to all UCD employees.

8. Avoid Skipping Meals

Skipping meals can be physically and emotionally fatiguing by causing energy levels to drop and leading to unpleasant feelings like hunger, exhaustion, and irritability.  All of these factors can make your mind and body feel worse, while also decreasing your productivity at work.  Make sure to eat breakfast, lunch, and a nutritious snack if needed.

In summary, incorporating nutritious food choices and physical activity into your workday can help you feel your best and be more productive.  Remember, small changes can make a big difference, so start by incorporating one healthy habit at a time and build from there.

Seasonal Foods and Recipes

Sheet-Pan Chile Crisp Salmon and Asparagus

A mixture of chile crisp, soy sauce and honey coats salmon bites that roast alongside scallions and asparagus for a quick and colorful weeknight dinner.

Mediterranean Chicken

Chicken breasts are a go-to since they cook up quickly and adapt to almost any flavor combination. This one-pot recipe is the perfect way to spruce up chicken breasts with bright Mediterranean flavors without dirtying all the pots and pans in your kitchen. 

Primary Category