It goes without saying that 2020 has brought with it a new normal that has drastically impacted every aspect of our lives. One of the most significant changes has been our collective shift to remote working. Have you mastered the day-to-day flow of Zoom calls? Or are you still struggling to find a comfortable footing in this new work-life balance? Whatever your case, we can all agree that it’s never felt as important to maintain a healthy body and mind.
For us, this begins with lunch. Sure, as Foodies, we’re a bit biased, but a well-planned lunch can make or break the momentum of the day, especially when working from home.
Here are a few tips we’ve collected on how to eat better while working from home. They’re incredibly simple and straightforward and will save you time and money, while still enjoying great, highly nutritious meals. A little bit of planning can go a long way to support you during the workday.
Make a Space
Research has shown that effectively working from home is all about setting boundaries and creating routine. Much has been written about the importance of designating a space for work. Not all of us have the room for a home office, but even a spot at the bedroom desk or dinner table will do.
Wherever you decide, we recommend it not being in or near the kitchen. This will help curb a condition we like to call “fridge wandering” for a snack every half hour. Working away from the kitchen will also help you mentally delineate space between “work” and “life”.
Just because you’re working at home doesn’t mean you have more time in the day to relax. Meal planning can be a life saver to effectively manage time, save you money, and cut down on waste. Try to keep grocery store visits to once a week, and when appropriate, buy foods in bulk. Avoid junk food and focus on the healthy stuff: fresh produce, nutritious starches and grains, organic proteins. In the mood to snack? Dried fruit, nuts, and dark chocolate (in moderation!) are a much healthier alternative to things you’d expect to find in a vending machine.
Prepare for the week by cutting fruits and veggies and cooking proteins and grains. When lunch time comes around, simply pull what you need from the fridge and use as needed. You’ll have a bright salad or a great snack in no time.
Frozen foods are a great resource too, either to complement lunches or provide a one-shop stop for an entire meal. Besides the convenience, the right frozen foods can be just as healthy as fresh produce. If you’re looking for a few more tips on waste-free shopping and eating, we have you covered.
Set a Schedule
Routine plays a huge part in healthy work and eating. Just as you schedule a start and a stop to your day, do the same with lunch and breaks. We’re not saying that you should drop everything exactly at 12:30 to eat, but make sure you’re setting aside a reasonable amount of time to get up, stretch, and enjoy a lunch away from the desk. We’re not fans of desk-eating, so enjoy your lunch in a different, comfortable spot in the house to refresh your brain and treat your body.
And while we’re on the topic of scheduling, set aside time in the day to take a break or two! If you can afford it, a walk around the block will do wonders. Walking, after all, is the ideal speed for thinking.
As simple as it sounds, drinking water is one of the most important things you can do during the day. You’re going to need at least 11 to 15 cups a day so keep a glass next to you at all times and make sure it’s always filled!
Trade out soda and other sugar-heavy juices for naturally-flavored sparkling water or herbal tea. Enjoy your morning or afternoon coffee, but keep your intake at a reasonable level as over-caffeination can cause anxiety, digestion issues, and even fatigue.
Since you’ll likely be prepping your lunches yourself, it’s important to be mindful of portion size. The Healthy Plate method that aims for an even, plate-sized balance of proteins, veggies, and starches. Only eat as much as you need, and if possible, you can always make extra and eat the rest for dinner, or as leftovers for the next day.
We all love a midday snack and there’s nothing wrong with that! Just be sure to portion them out to avoid eating too much out of the bag or container.
As more and more of us continue to work from home, it’s never been so important to find the right balance between eating healthy and working healthy.
These days, many of us on the Cadence Kitchen team are working remotely. And even though we’re apart, many of our lunches are in-house favorites like our Lobster Tortellini, Lemon Risotto, and Chicken Tikka Masala. We’re proud of our meals that shine in that sweet spot of convenience, nutrition and taste.
Is there a dish of ours that you think would be great for lunch, either on its own, or as a hack? Share in the comments below!
Ibeth Echepetelecu is Chief Human Resources Officer at Cadence Kitchen. She leads Cadence Kitchen’s search for honest and driven people to join us as we create a more delicious and sustainable way to enjoy home-cooked meals. Ibeth is excited to be disrupting the food industry and cultivating a team with long-term vision that is motivated by what’s best for people and the planet
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