Lunch break benefits

July 28, 2015   //   No Comments

The government website Fit For Work recently reviewed a BBC poll about how many staff took a real break at lunch time.

The survey discovered that 54% of staff regularly work through their lunch break and 53% believed the culture of not taking lunch breaks to be widespread in their workplace.  There are many sound arguments in favour of getting away from our desks during lunch breaks, some of which were covered in the BBC report:

  • Eating whilst continuing to check emails, etc. can lead to ‘mindless eating’, which can cause people to overeat and/or eat the wrong foods and therefore gain weight.
  • There are obvious health benefits to getting away from work and out into the fresh air. Sun rays stimulate the body to produce Vitamin D and encourage the production of serotonin (a hormone that plays an important part in the regulation of mood).
  • Desks and keyboards often harbour high levels of bacteria (sometimes even more than toilet seats) and any food dropped onto computer keyboards can actually feed these bacteria.
  • Getting away from our desks and moving around helps prevent the onset of musculoskeletal disorders (from prolonged poor posture) and potentially deep vein thrombosis (DVT), which can be caused by long periods of sitting.

‘Wellbeing’ is more than a buzzword. It stands to reason that healthy, happy employees are more likely to be productive at work. So it’s logical that encouraging employees to eat healthily, take exercise, get out into the fresh air, and take a proper break from work will ultimately improve an organisation’s chance or remaining productive and successful. For information on work-related health issues, or for guidance on making the workplace a healthy one, take a look at the Fit for Work online resources.