The trees are turning in some parts of the country as fall makes its way into our lives. From pumpkin (and/or) apple spice everything to fall family fun at pumpkin farms and apple orchards, fall offers a feast for the senses.
The smell of bonfires and s’mores mixes with the alluring fragrance of pies baking in the neighborhood. The leaves crunch away on evening walks. And, depending on where you live, the nip in the air is just right…until it’s not.
It’s the time of year when comfort food makes its presence known and women everywhere share a silent bit of relief they can stow away the swimsuits and dresses for a few months.
Eating your feelings is even more common in the winter months for any number of reasons. Yet that is why it’s that much more important to keep in mind: we are what we eat. Anyone who has so much as attempted a diet of any kind in their lives has heard the phrase.
And the science doesn’t lie. What we eat has a direct impact on literally everything that goes on with our bodies, including brain activity. A recent article in Forbes highlighted several examples of how diet impacts productivity in the workplace:
- Eat Carbs in Moderation: While carbs are a necessary component to a healthy, balanced diet, an indulgent trip to Olive Garden over your lunch break can kill your productivity. Why? Research published by the US National Library of Medicine found that eating too many carbs for breakfast can negatively affect productivity based on its impact on brain tryptophan concentrations and serotonin synthesis. In layman’s terms, eat carbs in moderation and you should accomplish more in the office.
- Low Blood Sugar = Low Self Control: Distractions are a constant as reliable as time itself. There’s TVs in break rooms, web sites on Smartphones, and the black hole otherwise known as pretty much any kind of social media. Meanwhile, research published by the Journal of Consumer Research links low blood sugar to low self control. What that means for productivity is simple: without maintaining a balanced level of glucose in the body, chances are any or all of the aforementioned distractions can wreak havoc on an otherwise productive day.
- Rest is Best, And Diet Matters: Coffee in the morning is no joke when it comes to getting that jump start most of us need. However, the inception of a productive day starts the day, and night, before. Diet and exercise can have a profound impact on sleep rhythms, and a sleepy worker does not make a productive one!
Fall is coming, and with it comes all the comforts of the season. But no matter the time of year, thinking of food as the fuel it is can change so much about almost everything.