It’s no secret that being well hydrated and having a healthy, balanced diet is paramount to being at your physical best. When it comes to the world of work though, just how big an impact does food and drink in the workplace having on staff productivity?
In today’s article we explore the science behind this link, and how it’s vital to provide quality water coolers and vending machines in the workplace.
Heads and hearts
Did you know that despite the brain only making up 2% of the mass of a human body, it consumes 20% of the total energy within the body every single day? We’ve all sat in science lessons as children and learnt about the immense power of the human brain, but without any context of how important the brain is in working life – for most of us, we rely far more heavily on our brains than the rest of our body to do our jobs.
Having a healthy, sharp mind by fuelling yourself with plenty of quality food and drink, can be the difference between a bad day at the office and a fantastic day at the office. Over the course of a year it could be the difference between getting a bonus or promotion, and not getting either – it has that big of an impact.
With everything human body related though, there are interconnections between complex organs and systems, and though the brain is the centre of thought, it needs to get its fuel from somewhere. The heart. Keeping both the head and the heart healthy is a huge part of feeling good and being productive at work.
Whole wheat and wholegrain foods
The benefits of wholegrain foods are twofold – they are the perfect source of slow release energy, which helps you maintain a steady source of glucose to your brain over the course of a day. Having great fresh food options for breakfast, lunch and snacks, means less peaks and troughs in energy levels, less cravings, and a brain switched on for all 8 hours of the work day.
They are also fantastic at keeping your heart healthy. Research suggests that replacing white carbohydrates with wholegrain alternatives can dramatically reduce your risk of developing diabetes, and reduce cholesterol thanks to the presence of a fibre called beta-glucan.
A 2012 study of workers in the US found that employees with unhealthy diets were up to 66% less productive than those who regularly consumed wholegrains and vegetables.
You can tick this one off the list by making sure that the next time you pick up a sandwich or wrap from a vending machine in the workplace, that it’s made with wholegrain or wholemeal ingredients.
You will have heard the phrase ‘superfoods’ used a lot over the last 5 years or so, and foods which fit into this category are more than justified in being labelled this way, when you look at the impact of regularly consuming them.
Raspberries, strawberries, blueberries and more are powerhouses when it comes to human health. The high levels of antioxidants present in berries makes them extremely effective at eliminating or minimising toxins in your body.
With many workplaces now offering fresh fruit, or breakfast snack pots and yoghurts containing berries, this is a great way of keeping staff healthy and productive. Especially when delivered through a vending machine in the workplace for 24/7 access, making it easy for workers to get a healthy snack, at any time of the working day.
Dark Leafy Green Vegetables
They may not be the best tasting vegetables you can get hold of, but they’re certainly the most healthy. Many salads, wraps, sandwiches and other foods available in vending machines are made with quality ingredients, included dark leafy green vegetables. Keeping yourself fuelled with lots of kale, spinach, broccoli and mixed leaves from great fresh food will tick the dark leafy green vegetable superfood box every time.
Pairing coffee and water
The highest profile productivity booster is coffee – the drink that us Brits consume millions of litres of every day. If you’ve ever had a couple of coffees during a long work day, you’ll know first hand the impact of caffeine can have on your energy levels and productivity.
A 2018 study found that there was evidence to suggest that having coffee in meetings can help facilitate more effective conversations and keep energy levels higher. Office coffee machines are a hugely important tool for enabling this, whether it’s in an office kitchen, breakout space or the Boardroom.
That’s not to say that coffee is the only important beverage that employees should consume during their workday. Just as important is for workplaces to have water coolers, water taps or other sources of fresh, filtered water for their staff, especially as coffee is a well-publicised diuretic.
We talked about water at the start of this article and it’s a great place for us to close things off. Keeping your coffee machines and water coolers in balance, both in terms of availability to staff and the quality of the drinks served, is one of the single most important drivers of productivity.
Interested in buying vending machines for your office? Looking for a great bean to cup coffee machine, fresh food vending machine or water cooler to boost productivity?
Speak to our expert team to find the perfect vending solution for your workplace, by calling 01865 341011 or by contacting us. We’d love to hear from you.