Positive Eating Habits Inhibited by Workplace Stress: Study

Yesterday we reported on the negative role that workplace stress can play in positive eating habits.

Workplace Insight states that “new research from the British Nutrition Foundation (BNF) claims that almost half (48 percent) of adults say that busy lives and stress play a large role in stopping them from eating healthily, with 40 percent of adults admitting that being too tired after work is their main reason for not being active.”

Said Roy Ballam, BNF’s Managing Director and Head of Education: “We know that a key to reducing obesity is changing behaviour – some of this will come from government and local environments making it easier for people to change. The results from this survey show that the main motivation for being healthy is weight control, however there seem to be a number of barriers within workplaces and universities that make this difficult. Encouraging work settings to engage more with health may be an effective way of helping people put their good intentions into action and we’ve seen an excellent response to BNF Healthy Eating Week from workplaces and universities this year, with over 1,400 organisations participating.”

The study offers other insights that are useful for well-run workplace wellness programs to continue in terms of program design and engagement:

“The BNF Healthy Eating Week survey explored other barriers to a healthy lifestyle and found that almost half (43 percent) of adults surveyed admit that they find it difficult to find reliable information on healthy diets, with changing information, messages and advice from media and experts being the biggest causes for confusion (76 percent and 61 percent respectively).”

“The survey reveals that social media platforms (37 percent) are the most common reported source for nutritional information for adults.”

“Under a third (30 percent) of respondents say that they use the NHS website, a quarter visit other health websites and 14 percent say that they gather nutritional information from a doctor, hospital or health clinic.”

Stated Ballam: “With two thirds of adults overweight or obese, the UK is in the middle of an obesity crisis – and a lack of consumer knowledge and reliable information on healthy eating is a huge cause for concern. In the digital age, with growing concerns about the trustworthiness of information in the media, many are confused about which online sources are reliable – unsurprising when there is so much conflicting advice available. The public need to receive more consistent messaging about diet and nutrition if we are to stand a fighting chance of changing these worrying health statistics.”