Fitness

Health Officials Say Employers Should Encourage Staff To Exercise At Lunch Time

Not just a benefit to our own health, exercise has the potential to benefit your employer too. Now health officials state that companies should be actively encouraging their workforce to exercise on lunch breaks. 

These officials are none other than the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE). 

And following a recent report from the UN which found that around two thirds of Britons are overweight, NICE have issued guidance on how to get the nation fitter, leaner and healthier than ever before. Declaring that employers should promote exercising on lunch breaks, whether it be going for a run, yoga, swimming or hitting the gym.

NICE also recommends making the working day a more active one, offering ideas such as holding walking meetings, encouraging walking breaks and encouraging taking the stairs rather than the lift.

In addition to this, the guidance adds employers should subsidise gym memberships, as well as, provide bike storage and shower facilities in order to encourage employees to walk, cycle or even run to work. 

This guidance comes as NICE state an active lifestyle can benefit employers by helping to cut down on the number of absences caused by both physical and mental illness.

NICE state: “Workplaces that have physical activity programmes to support employees to move more when travelling to and from work and during the working day will positively increase physical activity levels,” 

“This may help to reduce staff absenteeism levels, increase staff satisfaction and improve the workplace environment.”

Professor Gillian Leng, deputy chief executive and director of health and social care at Nice, said: “If the United Kingdom’s 5.7 million small and medium sized businesses encouraged their workforce to be more active, they are more likely to reap the benefits of having engaged employees who are more productive and are less likely to take time off sick.

Figures from the Office for National Statistics show that in 2017 there were 131 million working days lost to sickness in 2017, with 13 million of those due to stress, depression or anxiety. 

Professor Gillian Leng, deputy chief executive and director of health and social care at Nice, said: “If the United Kingdom’s 5.7 million small and medium sized businesses encouraged their workforce to be more active, they are more likely to reap the benefits of having engaged employees who are more productive and are less likely to take time off sick.

As a society we are facing an obesity crisis caused in part by people not exercising enough.

“We need people to change their lifestyle and to take more exercise.

“If they can do this during the working day, not only will they benefit, but so too will their employers and the NHS. It’s a win-win for everyone.”

If you’re looking for ways to make your working day a healthier one and would like to hear more about the health benefits of meal prep delivery. Get in touch today.