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The past year has been a struggle for all of us. Pandemic restrictions have led to lower than usual moods, whilst working from home has seen a dip in productivity. As we move out of restrictions, Britons are looking to supercharge their productivity and wellbeing. Experts have now revealed that our diets could play a key role in this.
As we look to the future, Britons are looking to emerge refreshed from the pandemic.
For too long we have been neglecting our eating habits.
With many of us working from home, the fridge and snack cupboard has been temptingly close, whilst successive lockdowns have driven many of us to comfort eating.
A survey by City Pantry has found that 34 percent of UK workers consume unhealthy foods three or more times a day.
The survey found over a third of workers felt unmotivated at work due to their unhealthy food consumption.
A further 32 percent reported feeling sluggish as a result of their poor diets.
Dr Uma Naidoo, a psychiatrist at Harvard Medical School and nutrition specialist, recommends Brits should look to eat foods that reduce inflammation as this causes low energy levels and fatigue.
She says: “Low-grade inflammation flips off a metabolic switch in the chemical pathway that produces energy.
“When inflammation is present in the body, less energy is available to the brain, so it’s important to eat anti-inflammatory foods to ensure workers wake up in a good mood and stay energised and focused through the entire morning.
“Also, fat is a key component for mental health. Your brain is made up of 60% fat and in order to perform at its best, it requires a constant supply of omega-3-fatty acids.
“Make sure you include healthy fats like extra virgin olive oil, olives, avocados, chia seeds, hazelnuts, almonds and macadamias in your diet.”
The top foods Brits eat to boost productivity include:
- Leafy green vegetables, such as cabbage, broccoli and spinach
- Healthy fats in the form of dark chocolate, nuts and fish
- Raw fruits and vegetables like peppers and berries
- Energy-boosting spices including turmeric, black cumin and capsaicin
- Plant-based protein such as tofu and tempeh
On top of adding these productivity-boosting foods to your diets, you may want to consider avoiding certain foods.
Dr Naidoo asserts that there are foods that can cause lethargy and even poor mental health.
Britons should cut back on the following:
- Highly-processed & Ultra-processed foods (like boxed cereals and crisps)
- Unhealthy PUFAs (processed vegetable oils like corn, grapeseed, sunflower and soy oils)
- High-GI carbohydrates
- Added and refined Sugars
- Artificial sweeteners
- Processed meats and cheeses
- Excessive coffee and alcohol
City Pantry said: “With workers now experiencing lower levels of exercise than ever before due to a widespread shift to remote working, it’s never been more important to prioritise healthy eating and exercise habits ahead of lockdown restrictions easing across the UK.”
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