Ms. Patel has a corporate job and has been managing her home, children and work successfully since the past six years. Of late, she has been complaining of unexplained weight gain, persistent exhaustion, body ache, weakened vision and insomnia. All of her biochemical reports are negative. The doctors say that she just needs to lose weight and she will be fine. She goes on a diet, sheds three kilos of weight in vain. Her health problems persist.
Here’s a classic example (Ms. Patel) of an increasing number of urban working people who face the dilemma of ‘I don’t know what’s wrong with me, but I feel unwell all the time’. A host of recent studies have shown that factors at the workplace can compromise your health. Working long hours at the computer without taking any breaks, is the number one reason, for spinal problems or the commonly occurring tension neck syndrome. Taking a break away from your computer gives you time to think, rest your eyes, rehydrate yourself, stretch your body and also grab a healthy snack.
Everyone keeps on harping about the importance of snacking through the day. But what kind of snacks should you really be having? Desk snacks like chips, granolas, colas, chocolate, flavored drinks, sugary energy drinks, namkeen – all are going to help you to pile on unnecessary pounds and leave you feeling guilty. Not just that, it will make you even hungrier in a couple of hours; so the end result is, you consuming many more calories than actually required. Instead, keep some nuts, dried fruit, sugar-free granolas, wholegrain crackers in your drawer and snack on these in the lunch room or while taking a walk. Watch out for those calorie laden goodies colleagues pass around on special occasions, its best to stay away from such foods.
A publication by the Harvard School of Public Health, 2005 stated that about one in four urban Indian women were overweight. This means that you can find a health buddy at your workplace and together practice the ‘healthy habits’. You need not be the only person to carry a fruit bowl for snacks when everyone else is munching the chips. You never know, you could be the trendsetters!
You might be using a hand sanitizer at every occasion but did you know that your keyboard, mouse and phone could be harboring thousands of disease causing germs? Infections such as cough, cold, diarrhea can be easily transferred through these surfaces. Use a disinfectant cleaner or a spray to clean these surfaces and avoid risk.
Most importantly, understand your body, your limits, when you can stretch and work long hours and when you need a break. Lastly, go on a holiday far away from your work and do not use your phone or laptop there. A vacation has been known to be the best cure for work related stress and health issues.
This article first appeared on the fleximoms blog.