How do you feel about your at-work eating habits? Eight hours can turn into a long day and sometimes the only way to break it up is through little snacks. And you deserve it, right? You are doing work. Well, you might want to be more careful about that. According to a recent U.K. survey, on average, women who work in offices consume an extra 100,000 calories a year. That translates to 2,240 calories a week–a whole extra day’s worth!
The study–which polled 1000 women–found that ladies tend to indulge in three snacks during the working day, totaling about 500 calories. The most common times to reach for these snacks tends to be 10:30 and 3:30–prime pick-me-up times. It’s also common to have a sugary pop or creamy coffee for a caffeine boost which just adds to the calorie count. Then there’s always the odd ‘coworker brings in donuts for the whole office’ scenario which women report can really throw a diet off.
So how can you avoid the potential compounded 28 pounds over the course of a year? First, you can try to restrict eating to certain times of the day and abstain from snacking in between. Sometimes when you think you’re feeling hunger, you’re really just thirsty. Be sure to drink water throughout the day and a cold one in the afternoon can sometimes give you the pick-me-up you need at 3:30.
If you’re not so keen on putting snacks aside entirely, maybe assess what kind of snacks you’re indulging in. Do you reach for a bag of chips or cookies in the afternoon? Those are full of calories, sugar and salt. Swap ’em for fruit, veggies or other healthier options.
Be careful when you’re choosing those ‘healthier options’ though. Even things that might seem healthy, like trail mix, can secretly hurt you. Nuts have a significant amount of fat in them and if they’re salted, they’re high in sodium. Dried fruit is also really high in sugar.
So your key to not eating an extra 50 days-worth of calories a year is to just make smart choices when you’re packing your work snacks. You know, most of the time.