Improve your team's positive psychology with food

Part two of our healthy eating tips discussing the science behind mood-boosting foods

Improve your team's positive psychology with food (part 2)


In part one, we discussed engaging in shared team lunches to encourage healthy eating and improve team work. However, the push for healthy eating isn’t going to last long if you’re reaching for the same boring meals. It’s important to have lots of different options to keep people out of the biscuit tin.

You can help your teams avoid the afternoon slump with some healthy, energy-inducing smoothies and juices. The key to avoiding unhealthy snacking is to eat little and often, so planning in some tasty but healthy snacks in advance for mid-morning and mid-afternoon should keep your teams’ energy and spirits up all day long.

MHR’s in-house Chef Ollie has a great healthy recipe to provide plenty of vitamins for your people:

Beetroot, lime, coconut water, ginger and honey juice

Ingredients:

  • Cooked beetroot, x4 balls
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • Coconut water 1lt
  • 10g ginger peeled
  • Honey to taste

To make this healthy juice, simply hand blend beetroot, ginger and lime into a puree. Add the honey and coconut water and mix. Add more honey if you need some extra sweetness. Then serve.

Plus, to keep sweet cravings under control, and provide an afternoon boost of happiness, Ollie has thought of a more traditional treat to keep you on track. Make a banana flapjack in advance to last you throughout the week. And it’s a simple recipe to follow:

Banana flapjack

Ingredients:

  • Cup of gluten free oats 300g (plus a bit extra if you like it firmer)
  • Bananas x3
  • Raisins 50g
  • Cinnamon 1tsp
  • Honey 100g
  • Dried Coconut 50g
  • Pumpkin seeds 25g

 

  1. Cook the bananas with the honey and mix until smooth.
  2. Add oats and all the other dry ingredients.
  3. Cook for 10-14min then remove from the heat.
  4. Oil a tray and line with greaseproof paper, then fill with mixture and pat down with a wet hand.
  5. Bake for 20min.

There’s science behind this too. Certain foods release serotonin, a neurotransmitter linked to happiness. Usually, people think of chocolate and other unhealthy comfort foods as a way to create happiness through eating. However, the same feelings can be achieved by physically activating serotonin release, eating foods such as spinach, bananas and turkey. These foods contain high levels of Tryptophan amino acids which converts into serotonin in the brain. Healthier than chocolate, these foods release those happy feelings to keep your people content throughout the afternoon.

With serotonin also helping to regulate sleep and pain, food high in this neurotransmitter will help your employees in multiple ways.

Keep your people motivated. Along with team lunches as mentioned in part 1, bring in fruit boxes or make some healthy snacks at home to boost your team’s morale.

Food for thought?

For other ideas about how to engage your employees and boost your workforce's productivity, visit our employee engagement page

Get inspiration here
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