Updated 31 August 2015

5 health tips for the workplace

Life is not just all about going to work, coming home, eating, grooming, and going to sleep. The following tips can be very helpful in enabling you to go to work with a smile.


Life is not just all about going to work, coming home, eating, grooming, and going to sleep. The following tips can be very helpful in enabling you to go to work with a smile.

Treat yourself with a good lunch
Do you have to pack yourself a lunch box and make snacks every day of the week? And are you at your wits’ end trying to strike a balance between healthy foods and your picky eating habits? Here's help.

Take action: Plan ahead and buy healthy food for your lunch box; resist the “easy” option of buying cold drinks, crisps and sweets; resist your own demands for high-fat snacks and fizzy cold drinks; buy a small, sturdy plastic container that is big enough to accommodate the food you want to take with you to work, without it getting squashed in the briefcase or handbag; include a variety of foods in your lunch box to ensure that your diet is balanced.

Avoid the Gothic look
If the dark circles under your eyes evoke images of boxing matches, it may be time to take things a bit slower and get more sleep. Note, however, that it could be more serious. An underactive thyroid, or sensitivity to certain foods, could be to blame.

Take action: If you are sleeping well, but still have circles under your eyes, consider eliminating possible food triggers from your diet. Start with wheat and then with cow's milk – these are common culprits. Also cut down on your salt and alcohol intake and stay well hydrated by drinking water when you're thirsty. If the problem persists, pay a visit to your doctor.

Did you forget something?
If you've been lamenting that your memory isn't what it used to be, take heart. Memory is a skill that can be sharpened and improved at any age, according to Connecticut College in the USA.

Take action: Give your brain a regular workout by: focusing – paying attention and concentrating will improve your memory; saying it again – repetition helps stamp things into your mind; writing it down – it reinforces thought; playing games at home – do word searches, crossword puzzles and play trivia; learning new tricks – take up a new hobby in your spare time, or study a language.

It's just work, so don't stress
Are deadlines, staff problems, production targets and other things keeping you awake at night? This lifestyle may be unhealthy, but often we have to continue coping with the work stress that we have, because we rely on the income we earn.

Take action: Make sure that your job description is clear so that you know exactly what your responsibilities are; don’t bring outside stressors into the workplace; don’t cause unnecessary stress by coming late, not making deadlines or being unprepared for presentations; limit your coffee and junk food intake at work – in the long run, these things actually add to your stress levels; don’t get involved in office politics – they very seldom have any positive spin-offs and take up valuable time and energy; if you feel you are being treated unfairly, do something about it by using the right channels; get exercise – it's a good stress reliever; and remember to approach your work day with a positive attitude – after all, you're spending most of your waking hours there.

Walk out being happy
Most of us equal the word "retirement" with relaxation, holidays and sleeping late. But for many, it can be the start of depression. It is common for people to suddenly feel emptiness and despair when they retire, especially if they have invested everything in their careers and neglected other areas of their lives.

Take action: If you are planning to retire in the near future, take note of the following: lead a balanced lifestyle and cultivate interests outside of work; don't wait until retirement to plan what to do with your time – plan ahead; prevent isolation by getting involved in activities where you can meet people with similar interests; learn more about depression and its symptoms; if you are worried that you may be depressed, seek help as soon as possible.

Image: Egg Sandwich from Shutterstock


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