How To Maintain Healthy Eating Habits While Working From Home
Updated: Apr 15
These are definitely unprecedented times since it appears there is a noticeable increase of people working remotely from home. Having had the opportunity myself to work from home for the past 18 months has given me some insight into maintaining a healthy balance between work and personal time. During this unique work related opportunity I was consciously aware of the importance of maintaining a healthy meal plan. It is a known fact that eating healthy maintains equilibrium in our blood sugar and energy levels, which promotes positive moods and clear thinking.
Working from home has brought some unusual challenges for some people since it is a deviation from the norm of office life. When we work in an office environment we are familiar with our surroundings with the social life of interacting with colleagues. We use to have a structured work schedule with routine breaks for coffee and lunch. However, working from home has to some degree caused disruption in our regular routine and we now have to create and maintain our own schedule. One glaring challenge is staying connected and remaining productive during this self imposed isolated work environment.
There is a meme circulating around social media that stated “The number 19 in COVID-19 is a reference to gaining 19 pounds during this pandemic”. From a psychologically perspective this sense of restriction can cause certain stress factors. Some people are now experiencing a certain sense of loss from a structured routine, their social life is in turmoil and they are experiencing a certain level of boredom. All these negative traits can contribute to indulging in emotional eating.
My from personal experience working from home has had some amazing advantages. However, there is a “flip-side” that has revealed some notable challenges. The following are some things I have noticed.
• A Sense Of Isolation
• Consciously Attempting To Remain Motivated
• Intentionally Having To Establish A Balance Between Work & Personal Life
• Remaining Physically Active
• Maintaining Healthy Eating Habits
When it comes to this topic of discussion of maintaining healthy eating habits I am a firm believer in having the proper mindset. This is paramount in all aspects of achieving a healthy lifestyle. The way we think is a major factor when transforming and maintaining proper eating habits. We need to consciously adapt the way we thing about food in order to avoid mindless snacking. Having this mindset will truly take our healthy eating habits to a whole new level.
The following are some areas of consideration that will assist in maintaining healthy eating:
Meal Prep: Having been involved in bodybuilding for a majority of my life I found meal prepping is an excellent way to control random snacking during the day. I would encourage you to plan out your meals in a controlled manner for your workdays. I like to set aside a period of time the night before to prep my meals.
Meal Schedule: When we work from home, our day may be slightly less dictated by routine than when we were in the office environment. During those times we would ordinarily take our coffee and lunch breaks around the same time. I would recommend replicating this routine into our new work-home surroundings by scheduling our coffee and meal breaks similar to our previous office work.
Count Calories: Since working from home is geographically closer to our fridge and pantry I would recommend we focus on maintaining our optimum Body Mass Index (BMI). Counting our caloric intake will assist us in this venture. There are various apps available that will assist you in determining your optimum daily calorie intake to maintain your optimal BMI.
Stock Up On Produce and Natural Food: Instead of junk food look at consuming healthier choices such as nonperishable and natural food sources. Having a fruit or veggie bowl handy for the times we feel peckish is an excellent alternative to sugar infused junk food.
Stay Hydrated: Water is the stable of life. I like to change things up slightly when it comes to drinking water since I usually consume a few litres per day. To avoid the bland taste of water by itself I will spruce my drinks with sparkly water with a squirt of Crystal Light. Green tea and black coffee are my staples when starting off the day.
Intermittent Fasting: I having been following this meal plan for a couple of years now. There are many health benefits to this lifestyle, which I have spoke about in a video that I posted on my YouTube site. (this is the link for that video for you reference https://youtu.be/cW43qTP8QZo). I have found Intermittent Fasting made it easier to maintain a proper eating schedule since it has a specific time frame for when I eat my meals.
Fitness Program: One of my favorite topics of discussion is the importance of maintaining some sort of physical fitness, especially when we are working from home. Consider exercises like walking, biking, weight or body resistance training. Physical fitness helps reduce stress, enhance our mood, improve sleep and overall emotional well-being.
Set Boundaries: This is extremely important in maintaining a healthy balance between work and personal life. Working from home can “muddy the waters” between work related activities and personal time for ourselves and our family/friends. Like our previous work schedule, we should choose a time when we will “clock out” from work. This is when we shut off our computer, close our laptop and ensure to not take any work related calls during this “self-time”. This habit will reinforce the mindset of work-personal life separation.
Working from home is a new lifestyle and we need to be patient with ourselves. Habits take time to develop. According to Lally’s study of “How long does it take a new habit to form?” it varied depending on the behavior, the person, and the circumstances. The time frame was quite profound, since this study revealed the timeframe to establish a new habit ranged from 18 days to 254 days. So, based on this thesis I would encourage you to not be negative with yourself if you have a few bumps along the way. Simply acknowledge the slight blunder, learn from the mistake and try not to repeat it.
Knowing and practising these recommended steps will ensure our work from home experience will have some positive benefits and an easy transition into our new work related lifestyle.
About The Author: Steve is a Christian Blogger, Videographer, and Personal Trainer. His content creation focuses on Societal Lifestyles, Health/Fitness and Faith.