Why Your Job is Making You Fat And What You Can Do About It

By | February 21, 2022

Be honest…

You’ve packed on the pounds during COVID.

Be really honest and admit that there was poundage added pre-COVID.

Eating chips from gifs

How do I know this? Becasue I’ve done it.

I’ve used food to do what food is not designed to do and paid the price with snug clothes and an inabiltiy to cross my legs.

When I’ve been on jobs that don’t require much mind work and constantly remind me that I am unimportant and can be easily replaced, my self esteem plummeted and made me a target for weight gain, depression and eating as way to numb and stuff my feelings siumultaneously.

Thirty years ago, I had a job that I loved.

Five days of the week, I was able to spend eight hours a day being with books.

As a total bibliophile, it was the best of many worlds. I was able to talk about books, read books and share all learning with coworkers, shoppers and anybody who loved and obsessed over ideas, books and knowledge.

What I didn’t know at the time was that I was designing a blueprint for my work life for the next forty years.

While nobody suggested that I spend an entirety in the book store world or retire from there, I had no future plans nor was being belittled to the extent that
food and eating became an obsession.

What did I learn during this time?

I learned that jobs needn’t be brutal, soul-sucking and pointless.

This job taught me to hold in my limited job imagination that it was possible to have a job that I loved and be respected while carrying out my duties.

I’ve also had the experience of being highly respected and encouraged to use my brain and problem solving expertise at least once a day.

This totally rocks and is a great way to live.

I loved it and gained very little weight.

Many times I have heard people talk about food as though it were a necessary evil; these folks experience no joy in food or eating.

I’ve had to learn the difference betwwen eating to live and living to eat.

Part of the reason that I struggle with food is that in my family of origin eating and in most cases overeating were seen as rites of passage and a way to solidify my social standing gender wise.

My earliest food memory of overindulging was the day I took on the Whopper with cheese and was able to scarf it down and declare in my best prepubescent nine-year -old voice: I’m still hungry!!! While this provided cheap, predictable and ongoing entertainment for the adults in my life, it started me on a path of using food to solve any and all emotional upheaval.

When I made the honor roll with a report full of A’s and B’s, we celebrated by hitting the all you could eat $5 Shrimp Buffet.

Happy Food GIF by Hello All - Find & Share on GIPHY

If I didn’t make the honor roll and became sad, we used the same $5 Shrimp Buffet to lift our spirits and march boldly into the weekend.

For years, I hid behind this addiction only to have it appear and force me to deal with it in my everyday life via a class I was teaching on behavior change.

It’s often the case that we often teach most what we need to learn. In my case, it was food addiction and being out of control.

So, dear reader you might be wondering: How can you prevent weight gain despite what is going on in your office and personal life?

Here are five tips I found on teh Eurekaalert.org website, there are five tips that will improve employee health, lessen the probability of weight gain and make companies and employees healthier.

1. Increase the level of training in health promotion and disease prevention and the level of advocacy by leaders both inside and outside of the workplace

2. Provide government incentives for employers to invest in workplace health programs

3. Increase the quality and quantity of research into the benefits of workplace health programs

4. Adjust government regulations to promote the use of evidence-based disease prevention programs

5. Link workplace and community-based programs in order to multiply the effect of each program

Which tip can you begin today no matter what the food culture is in your office?

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