Often times our lunch hour is more like a 10-15 minute break so how can we make sure we can have a balanced meal when we have limited time.
Several of the factories and facilities I have worked with there is a growing trend of employees:
- skipping meals
- replacing meals with coffee
- grabbing something off the grease truck.
If we skip meals we are more likely to:
- Hangry – Hungry + Angry. When we hit the hangry stage, we are not thinking clearly, our productivity drops, and usually not a fun person to be around.
- Increased cravings – Skipping meals often leads to low energy and increased food cravings.
- Poor food choices – This leads to large portion sizes and even larger caloric intakes. Eating large portions late in the day will also disrupt sleep
Some straightforward ideas can fit into several working lifestyles. A few things to consider before getting started:
How much time do you have? We might “technically” have a 30-minute lunch break by the time you clock out, get to the lunchroom, hit the restroom you might only have 5-15 mins.
What types of foods do you like. If you keep food within something you find enjoyable, you are more likely to eat them and not just skip the meal or replace it with a cup of coffee
- Shakes or bars – Sometimes, we have to accept this is the time we have, so how can we use it most efficiently. When time is minimal, a balanced bar or shake might be the best option.
- Salads & Wraps– I am a big fan of the mason jar salads. I have even used PB plastic jars, so I don’t have to worry about the glass breaking. Load up the jar with the dressing on the bottom and around something like grated carrots so it will not make the lettuce or softer items soggy. Love sandwiches you can change up sandwiches and use wraps with some proteins and veggies.
- PBJ Sandwiches – These are great as they are locker stable; maybe we don’t have the option to refrigerate our meals. This is a simple and easy way to get in 15-20 grams of protein
- Leftover dinners – leftover diners are a great way to have a quick meal. Just pop in the lunchroom microwave and eat.
- Thermos soups – those coffee thermoses can be used to keep soup warm, so lunch is drink and go. I spend a lot of time on the road driving, salads are going to work for me, but I can drink my broccoli or leek and potato soup from a coffee thermos while I am driving. The best part is most of them hold about 16-20 oz, which is perfect. If you have a favorite soup with chunks of veggies, you can run it through a blender before heating it, so it is smooth and drinkable. My favorites are cream of broccoli, cream of mushroom, potato and leek or kale and chicken or basil escarole and lemon. All blend up well.
- Nuts, fruit, and cheese – There is nothing wrong with a meal that is just some random whole food snacks. I have often eaten a cheese stick, almonds, and apple for a meal. You can even add in some slices of roast beef or sausage.
It’s important that we are feeding ourselves appropriately so that we can preform at our best and live a healthier life.
If you would like to support your employees in making healthier habits lets have a discussion you can email me directly at Laura@LauraTimbrook.com