A Healthier Office Lifestyle
Christopher Boult, Director - Premium Pilates and Fitness
Deaths from cardiovascular disease were the leading cause of death in Australia in 2011 according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics
(ABS) 2013 health survey. Negating any genetic predisposition, cardiovascular disease is entirely preventable. However, an increased
sedentary lifestyle has become a greater social norm resulting in decreased exercise, poor dietary habits and an upsurge of mental illness.
Throughout the corporate landscape, sedentary lifestyle has become quite prevalent, particularly with rapid technological advances. Greater
education and awareness regarding recommended movement and health patterns set out by the Department of Health can help in preventing
Australia’s leading killer.
Physical activity is a great way to increase energy levels, release feel good hormones, build healthy bones and prevent osteoporosis in
later life. A minimum of 30-minutes of moderate intensity cardiovascular exercise a day is recommended for healthy populations to maintain
current health status as well as 2 resistance training days per week. Examples of moderate intensity cardiovascular exercise include
walking, jogging, cycling, swimming, running. Examples of Resistance training include free weights, circuit training or Reformer Pilates. In
the same ABS survey, only 43% of Australians were reported to be reaching this exercise goal.
Healthy physical practices should coincide with healthy nutritional practices. Fad diets are not the way to maintain a healthy lifestyle or
eating practices. All macronutrients (carbohydrates, proteins, and fats) are necessary for the body to function optimally. Cutting out
carbohydrates will not make you a healthier person even if you have lost a few kilos doing so. It all comes down to how much energy you are
putting into your body and how much you are expending. Part of a sedentary lifestyle is the overconsumption of nutrient poor, energy dense
food. So instead of reaching for that Snickers bar while you’re at your desk, try a piece of fruit. Sugar is not your enemy; the glucose
that result from the broken-down starches provided by carbohydrates help your brain to function.
5 easy steps to leading a healthier office lifestyle:
- Get up from your chair every 25 minutes and do 10 squats. By the end of your work day, you would have done 190 squats!
- Snack on fruit, vegetables, nuts and legumes rather than chips, lollies, chocolate and biscuits.
If you feel hungry, try drinking water. Thirst responses are more delayed than hunger so you could be drastically dehydrated by the time you
start to get dry mouth and lips.
Lower your portion sizes. Overconsumption is a major cause of energy excess for individuals. The recommended serving size for a piece of
steak, for example, is 65grams.
- Prepare your own meals. This way you know what goes into it and you know how much you are eating.
For further information on Australian Dietary Guidelines or recommendations, head to health.gov.au or eatforhealth.gov.au
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