Can Working Remotely Sabotage Your Healthy Eating Habits?
Those work-from-home days might not be so great after all.
Working from home is one of the greatest things to happen to the modern workplace. (There's even a song about it.) Whether this means working remotely one or more days a week or when travelling, more folks can swing working from outside the office thanks to laptops and video chat. Despite all the positives that come with working from home (pajama pants all day, anyone?), the loose structure of WFH days could be causing you to kick your healthy eating habits. Here are five ways working remotely could be ruining your healthy habits and exactly what you can do to get back in control.
Problem: You don’t set an eating schedule.
Not having a schedule can make eating habits fall by the wayside. In a typical office setting, you eat on the way to work or when you get to the office and then buy or bring lunch. Everyone is on a similar schedule so it’s easy to eat meals in a timely manner. When you’re working remotely, you may choose to skip meals, forget to eat, or just eat whenever you feel like it. This can cause eating patterns to run amuck. Studies show that skipping breakfast can lead you to comsume more calories later in the day and that eating whenever you feel like it may have you eating more calories than you realize.
The Solution: Set a schedule to eat three meals and one to three snacks at designated times throughout the day. Try to eat the same time every day.
Problem: You splurge, everyday.
Accountability is easier in an office surrounded by people who see what and when you’re eating. If you working remotely where no one is watching what you eat, you can end up splurging on high-calorie junk foods everyday.
The Solution: Pre-determine when you’ll have high-calorie or other junk. It also helps to be mindful of when and what you choose to splurge on.
Problem: You don’t have healthy food in the house.
It’s easy to order in lunch at work or step out and grab a bite, but this may not be possible when you work remotely. This is how you find yourself eating the boxed mac and cheese and months-old candy you have lying around the house because you haven't found time to make it to the store.
The Solution: Plan your daily meals and go food shopping so you have everything readily available to heat and eat. If you do plan on ordering out, review the menu the day before so you can select a healthy option.
Problem: You’re overly stressed.
When you go into the office, it’s easy to forget about what’s back at home. However, when you’re at home the stress of balancing kids, family obligations, and work may get out of hand — so much so that you end up turning to food to help relieve the stress.
The Solution: When going to work remotely, make a conscious effort to separate your work time from your family life. Create a quiet space at home to work where you cannot be disturbed, unless it's an absolute emergency.
Problem: You graze throughout the day.
Working from home can mean full access to your kitchen, and every snack in there, so you can end up grazing on small amounts of food throughout the day. A cheese slice here, some pretzels there...you get the idea. The calories will add up quicker than you think.
The Solution: Plan out portioned meals and snacks for the day and put your favorite munchies out of sight so, hopefully, they are out of mind.