When you share an office space with other people, the chances of you coming down with something are pretty good. However, that doesn't mean there aren't preventative measures you can take to decrease your chances of that. While some are more obvious than others, such as washing your hands or sanitizing high-touch surfaces, there are plenty of other things you can do to maintain your health and boost your immunity too. Keep reading for five of them.
1. Provide Your Body With What it Really Needs
Being mindful of how you fuel your body each day will have a huge impact on your health. When your goal is to stay healthy in an office setting, making sure you pack a punch nutritionally will make all the difference.
Include supplements such as Vitamin C to help improve your body's immune response, or explore the health benefits of ginger root for its anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties. If you haven't tried juicing yet, now is the perfect time to start. This is an excellent way to deliver a strong dose of vitamins and nutrients that will keep your body going strong. Have fun with experimenting here.
Focusing on whole foods rather than refined and processed items will go a long way as well. Packing wholesome lunches and snacks will keep you from hitting the drive-thru or the vending machine — neither of which will do much for your health.
2. Get Up and Move
While it might be easy to settle in at your desk for the long haul, don't let yourself be sedentary for too long. Did you know that prolonged sitting can be just as harmful for your health as smoking?
Research has shown that sitting for long periods of time can lead to health issues such as high blood pressure, diabetes and heart disease. Since sitting isn't necessarily avoidable in an office setting, take matters into your own hands by taking walking breaks every 30 minutes, or getting up to stretch. Forming a walking group with other coworkers is a great way to encourage movement while also holding each other accountable. Parking farther away from the building is another way to get more steps in during the day.
Switching from a traditional sit-down desk to a standing model is another good way to increase your activity level. Consider a desk that incorporates both sitting and standing. This is a good choice for anyone who might need to relieve certain pressure points throughout the day, or who has concerns with blood clots.
3. Drink Your Way to Health
What you drink throughout the day has a big influence on your overall health, so pay attention to what's in your tumbler.
While not much beats a good cup of coffee in the morning, remember that there is a time and place for everything. Not only will cutting back on the additional caffeine be beneficial to your health, you'll be more apt to increase your water intake as well. Wondering how much water you should drink? A general rule of thumb is at least eight glasses of water per day, eight ounces each.
Don't forget about the power of certain herbal teas, but try to focus on caffeine-free blends wherever possible.
4. Use Your Vacation Time
Have you ever found yourself wondering where the past year went, and wishing you had used some vacation time? If that's you, you're not alone. Too many people don't schedule time off from the office, whether it's due to workload, a new position or feeling guilty for doing so. One of the biggest downsides to this is that by not taking time off, you're not giving yourself the chance to de-stress, realign your focus and find the sense of balance you might be missing.
Stress is one of the leading reasons for health problems and it should be taken seriously. While nobody is saying you need to book a two-week vacation to Bali to wind down, they are saying that a few days off here and there can be beneficial to your mind and body.
5. Get a Handle on Workplace Stress
Anyone who works at an office can agree that in addition to the demands and stress of their individual jobs, there are plenty of other stressors that can be just as detrimental to their health, or even more so. Because of this, it's important to find ways to manage these effectively.
This is a case where little changes can add up. Keeping a stress ball in your desk, a vial of calming lavender essential oil, or working on mindful breathing techniques are all simple ways to reach a sense of calm whenever necessary. Remember, when your goal is to stay healthy at work, giving stress the boot is essential.