All that food at work is making us unhealthy, study finds

All that food at work is making us unhealthy, study finds

American worker bees eat an average of 1,300 calories at work every week and many of those calories are high in fat and sugar - so-called empty calories. according to EurekAlert! online science news service, which published the study results on Monday.

The research mirrors a recent study of over 8,000 people in the United Kingdom, which found that those who ate regularly at their desks or in the office canteen were more likely to be obese.

"To our knowledge, this is the first national study to look at the food people get at work", Onufrak said.

Stephen Onufrak, from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and colleagues studied the food and beverages that people bought at work from the cafeteria and vending machines as well as those they get for free from common areas, worksite social events, and meetings.

After analyzing the results, they found that nearly a quarter of the participants received food from work at least once a week averaging almost 1,300 calories.

A STUDY of more than 5,000 employees found the food they consume, hunched over desks or laptops, are full of salt and unhealthy refined grains.

"If you look at the quality of the foods people got, it definitely did not necessarily adhere to the dietary guidelines very closely", he continued. Free food was the main reason of why people ate at work with 17 percent of the votes, versus those who purchased food at work, which was only 8 percent. But it's OK to say no to the birthday cake or the brownies. A significant amount, which may well be responsible for those extra pounds, especially since those are mostly empty calories - nearly devoid of nutrients, full of solid fats and added sugars.

Subjects in the study filled out surveys about what they ate at work over a seven-day period.

The study suggested ways for workplaces to promote access to healthier foods, noting that changing employees' health behaviors has the potential to reduce both sick days and health care costs for companies -- added motivations to the public health concerns.

ABC reported a few of the researchers' suggestions, including promoting a salad bar over a pizza or burrito station in the employee cafeteria and replacing those cheese-flavored chips in the vending machines with sunflower seeds.

"We hope that the results of our research will help increase healthy food options at worksites in the USA", he added. The reason why this food is typically unhealthy is quite straightforward: employers want to give employees tasty food, often sweet.

Researchers say that employers should take some responsibility for this trend and think more about how to provide healthier food options to their employees. "Providing delicious, appealing, healthy food can also help to create a culture of health at a workplace".

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