Working in an office can be great - there’s no weather to contend with, your social circle can grow if you make friends with your workmates and you have the regularity of nine to five hours. But sitting at a desk all day can have its downside. It can put stress on your neck and back, causing your posture to suffer, as well as one day giving you a shock when you step on the scales.

We all know that movement burns calories, which when paired with a healthier diet keeps us feeling fit and healthy. But how many of us consistently stick to that way of living? Although an office is a social place to be, it also means that there will be more unhealthy snacks on offer, as it is always someone's birthday or a celebration of some kind. We have taken a look at some of the risks of being too sedentary in the office, as well as some of the things that we can do to help overcome obesity in the workplace.

What health issues can obesity cause?

As the weight creeps on, so do the health problems. Some of the most common workplace issues are increased blood pressure, high blood sugar, high cholesterol, an increased risk of diabetes and excess fat around the tummy which can lead to heart problems. 

Sitting still for 8 hours a day and reaching for unhealthy snacks puts pressure on the body both inside and out. It can give us poor posture and make us fatigued much more quickly. Even if you start your job as a fit and healthy person, it won’t take long for new habits to form and for all of your previous hard work to be undone.

What can I do to prevent obesity in the workplace?

The answer to this might seem like common sense, but is sometimes hard to carry out in life. Simply moving more and eating less unhealthy foods will enable you to have a much more balanced outlook, losing any unwanted weight and keeping your body in peak condition. Try these simple ideas to start making changes:

  • Take a break - make sure that you get up at regular intervals and go for a walk away from your desk. This doesn’t have to be far, just enough to get the circulation going and to stretch your limbs. Little and often is the key.
  • Start having walking meetings - who says that meetings have to be in a conference room? If your meeting is only between you and one or two others, take it outside and walk around while you discuss your agenda.
  • Snack well - plan your lunch the night before and don’t rely on convenience food from the local cafe. Bring healthier snacks such as fruit, low fat yogurts and nuts to stop your cravings for sugary foods, which will help to cut the calories and have more of an effect if you start exercising regularly.
  • Go to the gym at lunch - many companies have corporate memberships with local gyms, so take advantage of this and go for a quick swim or run on the treadmill during your lunch hour. This will also help to wake up your brain for the afternoon shift.
  • Stand more - if the gym is not your thing, try standing at your desk while working. Height adjustable standing desks have become increasingly popular in offices for the purpose of combating aches, pains and obesity. They can also be used as a normal desk if you don’t feel like you could stand all day. Click here for a wide range of standing desks and standing desk converters that could work wonders for your office health.