I love doing corporate wellbeing workshops and I’m really pleased to see that workplace nutrition is becoming an increasingly important public health agenda issue; we are now recognising the importance of entrenching a healthy workforce and this is important given UK workers spend a significant amount of time in the workplace.
The British Dietetic Association conducted an in depth review (Work Ready Programme: Supporting Healthier working lives through dietitian-led wellness initiatives, 2015) and identified that up to 10% of sick leave and higher levels of productivity loss at work may be attributed to lifestyle behaviours and obesity, and that workplace health interventions may improve productivity by 1-2%. In addition, a recent estimate by the National Institute of Health & Clinical Excellence showed that a company employing 1000 people, could lose more than £126,000 a year in lost productivity due to obesity alone. This highlights the importance of workplace health and convinces us that the workplace is an ideal place to encourage and promote healthier living.
I’m delighted that as a Registered Nutritionist I can have some influence on workplace health through delivering my corporate wellness services. I was recently asked to present to the staff at Paycare, based in Wolverhampton, on behalf of Unicorn & Co. I prepared a 1 hour presentation /workshop that highlighted the positive impact that good nutrition and hydration, alongside being active throughout the day could have on worker’s health and productivity. I also spoke about the important role employers play in supporting and motivating their employees to make the necessary lifestyle changes.
Of course, this was just a one hour introductory presentation. What I hope, as with all corporate businesses I work with, is that they will continue to follow through with delivering workplace health initiatives in the longer term so that the changes can be ingrained in individual’s day to day lives and embedded in organisational culture.