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(NewsUSA) - Offices around the country are finally opening back up. According to census.gov, more than a third of Americans are still working from home , but the number of people getting back into their daily commutes-and their work clothes -- is growing every day.
In the APA's Stress in America™ poll conducted in February 2021, 42 percent of Americans reported undesired weight gain during COVID-19 quarantines, lockdowns and work-from-home time. Their average weight gain: 29 pounds.
To get back into a healthier routine once you head into the office, Courtney McCormick, registered dietitian and manager of clinical research & nutrition at Nutrisystem, offers these simple tips.
Pile on the Produce: Even the odds and help yourself stay on track when you clock in. Load up on non-starchy vegetables such as cucumbers, peppers, carrots and more each day because they're loaded with vitamins, minerals and fiber, but they're low on calories. The fiber helps you feel full without filling out.
Pack Satisfying Snacks: Healthy snacks may be the most important option you can give yourself at the office. When you start to feel that 3 p.m. slump, it can be so easy to grab one of those coworker-brought bagels or hit the vending machine. Being prepared with satisfying options can help you make food decisions to meet your health goals.
Make Meals Ahead: Meal prepping ahead of time can help you stay on track when it's time to eat at the office. Pre-portioned meals such as those from Nutrisystem or power bowl recipes are a great healthy lunch meal prep option because they are easy to grab and go, yet heartier than a salad. You can also whip up several servings of chicken in the slow cooker or on the grill to pair with steamed veggies all week long.
Stay in the Know: Once you've got your healthy meal prep underway, arm yourself with information. When a coworker invites you to lunch or happy hour, you're going to want to be there-it's the first one in more than a year! So give yourself the info to concentrate on the experience without stressing about your order. Look at the menu online before you head out so you can see which options are best for your healthy lifestyle.
To add to your efforts, don't forget to stay hydrated and active during the workday. Pack a water bottle to refill during the day and plan to meet a co-worker for a lunchtime walk. For more great tips, visit Nutrisystem's The Leaf at leaf.nutrisystem.com.