Productivity at work is an index that is gaining more and more consideration. A study by researchers at Brigham Young University showed that employees with poor dietary habits are 66% less productive than those on a nourishing diet.
Apparently, today, due to harmful nutrition, more and more employees are suffering from obesity, diabetes, and other chronic diseases, more than ever.
This may also be connected to the fact that processed food is now available everywhere. Even the common hot dog bought from a street corner can have an uncertain origin.
And in terms of companies, businesses, and employers, this trend has a clear impact on their ability to do their job. The study showed that the group that is most likely to have a decrease in productivity is the one between 30 and 40 years old.
In other words, the brain needs a precise type of energy for optimal performance, and this is generated only when the body receives the right amount of nutrients. To do this, you need to pay attention to your diet when trying to reach the highest level of performance, both physically and mentally.
What influences productivity at work?
In order to increase productivity at work, you need to know what to avoid. Here are three factors that can make you feel powerless, lethargic, and even nervous.
1. Overflow of carbohydrates
Carbohydrates are a necessary part of nearly every diet, but when we relate to a working day, an excess of carbohydrates can lead to a decrease in productivity. Most carbohydrates are found in bread or food with a lot of sugar, and their direct connection with insulin can have a shocking effect on daily energy reserves.
Foods with a lot of carbohydrates constrain the body to produce a lot of insulin, which floods the brain with hormones that cause drowsiness, such as serotonin and tryptophan.
2. Low blood glucose
Self-control is directly associated with productivity. The ability to complete an obligation is directly interrelated to self-control, and a study by Alexander Fedorikhin argues that the choice to fight temptation and do what is right has to do with the level of glucose in the body. Low blood glucose often means a lack of food, which can affect mood and behavior.
The study utters that glucose is the element that provides energy for all brain activity, and it is possible that self-control, being one of the complex processes, which use up a lot of energy, depends on the level of glucose. Thus, a small amount of glucose in the bloodstream can lead to a low capacity of self-control and difficulties in performing certain tasks.
3. Hunger + Anger = Hangry effect
Immediately after work, when you still haven’t had time for your lunch, you may feel nervous for no reason, easily annoyed by small things. The combination of hunger and anger is called hangry and is a common feeling when blood glucose levels are low. The brain needs fuel to regulate emotions, and anger is one of the most difficult to regulate.
As self-control and determination decrease towards the end of the day, the feeling of anger becomes even more pronounced.
In fact, a study published in PNAS found that judges give harsher sentences when they are hungry.
Become more productive by following 4 simple directions!
1. Choose the right “fuel”
To provide the brain with the basic amount of glucose it needs, you have to include carbohydrate foods in your diet.
High glycemic index foods such as white bread, refined grains, and sugary drinks release a lot of energy at once and can cause a glucose drop, which will make you hungry faster and prevent you from concentrating.
Foods with a low glycemic index, on the other hand, are harder to convert to glucose and give you energy for a longer period. Examples are brown rice, quinoa, sweet potatoes, yogurt, soy milk, beans, and fruits.
2. Include protein in your diet
For a balanced diet, include protein sources such as chicken, tuna, eggs, tofu, nuts, and Greek yogurt. Thus, digestion will be slowed down and the release of energy will take longer. Besides, animal proteins can stimulate the activity of brain cells.
3. Choose strategic times to eat
Your blood glucose level drops to about 2-4 hours after a meal. As such, you should schedule yourself to eat every 3 hours so that your energy level are constant, and you are not hungry.
4. Hydrate yourself
Always keep a glass or bottle of water around you, from which to drink from time to time. Even minor dehydration can prevent you from doing your job.
Our intake habit has a greater influence on productivity than we realize. But if you pay more attention to how food can be turned into fuel, you will be able to enjoy a high level of efficiency every day.
Who is the author?
John Peterson is a journalist with 4 years of experience working in London magazine “Shop&buy”.
He is also a skilled writer for websites such as BrillAssignment, Best Custom Essay, and Best Essay. John is a professional mini-tennis player, and he has written a novel “His heart”.
Danziger, S., Levav, J., Avnaim-Pesso, L. (2011). Extraneous factors in judicial decisions. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences , 108 (17) 6889-6892; DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1018033108
Gailliot, M. T., Baumeister, R. F., DeWall, C. N., Maner, J. K., et al. (2007). Self-control relies on glucose as a limited energy source: willpower is more than a metaphor. Journal of personality and social psychology, 92(2), 325–336. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-35184.108.40.2065