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Heart-Healthy Habits at the Office

Health Benefits of Taking a Quick Break

Taking five-minute breaks from sitting at your desk, especially if you work on a computer, can have several benefits:

#1 – It helps your concentration.

Short breaks can help increase your concentration, alertness, and work speed.

#2 – It can lower stress and reduce accidents.

Breaks can help lower stress and your risk for on-the-job accidents, soreness, musculoskeletal disorders, and eyestrain.

#3 – It can help lower your BMI.

Short breaks are also linked to having a smaller waistline, lower body mass index (BMI), and lower triglyceride levels.

Below are examples of some activities you can do in five minutes or less to benefit from rest breaks.

  • Take several short breaks throughout the day (about every hour). Make sure they include some movement.
  • Take a short walk away from your workstation- ask your coworker to join you.
  • Stand up and stretch at your desk without looking at your computer monitor.
  • Get out of your chair whenever you take phone calls at your desk.
  • Change positions at your workstation.
  • Have a drink of water or a light snack.

Bring Your Own Lunch! (BYOL)

Prepare and bring in your own home-made lunch when going to work. Home packed meals are usually healthier and will help you fight the urge to eat foods you see in vending machines or at fast food restaurants.

Keep Heart-Healthy Snacks Within Reach

We all love to snack, especially when working a desk job. To ensure that your body is getting the nutrients that it needs consider keeping some heart healthy snacks on hand, such as:

  • Fresh or dried fruits
  • Vegetables (carrots or celery sticks)
  • Trail mix
  • Whole grain crackers with canned tuna or peanut butter
  • Plain low-fat or fat-free yogurt (goes perfectly with fruit)
  • Popcorn (it’s a whole grain! Who knew?!)

Having trouble being active at work? Indulge in a friendly step competition among your coworkers. This challenge gives you the opportunity to get away from your desk and to have a little fun!

Celebrate American Heart Month

Each February during American Heart Month, the WakeMed Heart Center takes the opportunity to step out and share the importance of taking care of your heart.

Whether it’s undergoing a procedure, learning about risk factors for heart disease, considering healthier eating options or putting your best foot forward on the treadmill, your health is close to our hearts.

Learn more about heart-related events that are taking place. Get daily tips on how to live life young at heart. And learn about better nutrition for better heart health.

About WakeMed Corporate & Community Health

The Corporate and Community Health division of WakeMed provides worksite wellness and health promotion services to numerous corporate and community clients throughout Wake County. The department is made up of a multi-disciplinary team who perform preventative health screenings, education and coaching upon request. The department assists thousands of people each year on their wellness journey.