How To Get Happy And Healthier Employees

How To Get Happy And Healthier Employees

employee1Are your employees calling in sick frequently or is there a lot of dissension in the office? May it’s time to work on finding ways to help improve their quality of life and help them become happy and healthier employees. Helping employees become healthier is also one way to help the become happier. The reverse is also true. Studies show that the happier and more optimistic you are, the healthier you are.

Studies show that the happier employees are, the less work time they miss and the more productive they are.

A wellness program is a good place to start. There’s a lot of research that shows employees had a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise a day had a greater chance of an boost in their performance by 15-percent. Eating healthy boosted performance by as much as 25-percent. The cost of health insurance is higher for those out of shape and often file more workman’s compensation claims. Those who exercise and eat healthy have 27-percent sick days. Providing a low or no cost program to help make those lifestyle changes can help.

Encourage or mandate time off.

Getting employees to take time off and have a life after work isn’t easy. Everyone is geared to a longer work day and skipping vacation time. If your culture has people chronically staying late, they definitely won’t be happy and healthy and neither will their family. Make sure each employee knows the cut off time to get their daily work finished. Let them know that they shouldn’t stay unless they’re notified if there’s a unusual emergency.

Consider job-sharing or flexible work hours.

If you want to get them to the gym, flexible work hours is the way to go. Whether it’s making it to the gym or ensuring they make it to their child’s parent days, you’ll have employees that are far more satisfied. Working from home occasionally and job-sharing can help too. It can also save the employee time commuting. Those changes can help your employee by not making them choose between a home life, while improving morale and productivity.

  • Eating lunch at their desk and sometimes dinner, definitely doesn’t lead to good health or a happy employee. Taking a full lunch break is important. It gives employees time to step away from the stress and get a healthier lunch than a bag of chips and a soft drink.
  • Have healthy snacks available. Too often offices have snack machines that carry sugary or unhealthy treats. Ask the vendor for healthier options.
  • Update your equipment. If your computer system is as slow as molasses, it can cause a lot of frustration. You’ll be amazed at how productivity increases both from the increased happiness and speed of getting a job completed.
  • A little praise and recognition from the boss goes a long way to employee happiness. Recognizing people’s accomplishments and even recognizing the people and greeting them can boost their morale and make employees more satisfied with their job.

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Beat Your Soda Habit

Beat Your Soda Habit

sodaIf you have a soda habit, it’s time to make some changes. Not only does it contain calories you probably aren’t counting, it’s also addictive. Soft drinks contain sugar and caffeine. It acts the same way in your brain as opioids and releases dopamine, the feel good hormone. In fact, various studies show it’s as addictive as cocaine and the added caffeine in many soft drinks amplifies the problem. So you think that diet soft drinks may be your answer? You’re wrong.

Diet drinks have other problems.

A study from the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society showed that soft drinks are equally bad for your health, even though they don’t contain calories. The study used seniors and compared waistline measurements and the amount of diet drinks consumed. They found that those who drank the most, had the biggest waistline. While nobody wants a larger waist, it is also quite dangerous. That’s visceral fat, the worst type of fat that’s stored around organs and causes health issues. It may be due to the artificial sweetener and how the brain identifies the sweetness.

It’s tough to kick the habit.

It may seem impossible if you’re drinking several bottles or cans a day, but it isn’t. You can start by weaning yourself off the drink a little at a time. Find a drink of choice, like unsweetened green tea or bottled water and start replacing one can of your favorite soft drink a day. After a week, if you’re drinking several cans a day, switch out the second can or bottle with water or green tea. While green tea still contains caffeine, it’s far less than coffee or colas or other high caffeine soft drinks, plus it offers other health benefits.

It may be easier to switch when you know all the hazards from your soda habit.

Let’s start with the real show stopper, soda accelerates the aging process. Your chromosomes are protected by telomeres that protect them and determine how many times they can replicate. The longer they are, the younger your biological age. If your chronological age is 42 and you have short telomeres, your biological or cellular age would be much older. Research completed at the University of California, San Francisco showed that people drank just one 8-ounce serving increased their cellular aging by 1.9 years. Drinking more servings per day escalated it. A 20-ounce serving added 4.6 years of aging. Soft drinks also increase the risk of diabetes, heart disease, some forms of cancer, osteoporosis and calcium deposits in the lungs, heart, eyes and blood vessels.

  • Carrying your chosen drink with you at all times can help. If water is your chosen drink, it’s far easier. It quenches your thirst better than sodas do, but if you miss the sugar or need some energy, try a piece of fruit.
  • Tracking just how many calories you ingest from soft drinks helps. You’ll be amazed at how just cutting out those calories can help you lose weight without changing anything else. Don’t switch to diet drinks or you’ll be boosting your waistline.
  • Mix your soda with water. Some people suggest you start by mixing a half and half combination and then slowly increase the amount of water. No matter what the combination, it’s a start!
  • If you aren’t ready for plain water, try jazzing it up a bit with fruit or natural flavors. Add slices of lemon or orange to your glass to make it tasty, yet still extremely low in calories.

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Prevention Is Key

Prevention Is Key

water1Most people wouldn’t neglect to change the oil in their car for years. However, those same people often fail to take action when it comes to their health until it’s almost too late. When it comes to being healthy, prevention is key. Besides getting regular check-ups, there’s a lot you can do to prevent serious conditions. Making changes in your lifestyle before poor health forces you to do it is a lot easier than waiting until your body quits running. It’s like changing the oil in your car. It’s far less expensive than the ultimate cost of not changing it and it keeps the car running better and longer.

Look at your lifestyle.

Are you eating healthy foods? Do you live an active or sedentary lifestyle? Are you overweight? Do you get adequate sleep at night? Are you drinking enough water? Do you abuse alcohol, drugs or tobacco? Is your life stressful? Do you have an active social life? How often do you smile? Are you at risk for sexually transmitted disease? All these factors and more affect your health.

Find an area where you need to make a change and do it.

You may not want to make all the changes at once, but focus on one until it becomes a habit. Drinking more water might be one of the easiest. If a Coke, Pepsi or other soft drink is your drink of choice, switch to water. It’s easy to understand how regular soft drinks can undermine your health. They’re loaded with sugar and sugar has a detrimental effect on your health, plus puts on the pounds. Did you know that diet soft drinks aren’t much better? One study showed that people who drank diet soft drinks had more visceral fat. That’s abdominal fat and the most unhealthy type.

Eating healthier and regular exercise are a top priority.

While exercise is extremely important, if you want to live longer and lose weight, what you eat should be a top priority. You simply can’t out-exercise a bad diet. If you’re not ready for a total lifestyle change, do it in steps. Start by cutting out foods with added sugar—which includes fructose, dextrose, maltose…etc. Eat more vegetables and fruit and less processed food. Boost your daily activity by taking a walk or taking the stairs. Little by little increase your activity until your ready for a program of regular exercise.

  • Are you a smoker or have other addictive habits? Get help. Studies show that giving up an addictive habit is easier when you eat healthy and workout.
  • Get adequate sleep. Lack of sleep not only affects heart health and your daily performance, it can add to your waistline. It boosts the hunger hormones and stifles the hormones that leave you feeling full.
  • Smile more and be more social. Not only do studies show that people who smile more live longer, they also show that those with a satisfying social life lived longer too.
  • Make one change today to boost your health and stick with it until it becomes a habit, then add another. You’ll be amazed at the difference in a year.


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Improve Your Lifestyle

Improve Your Lifestyle

eat green2Despite the advancements in health care, the life expectancy in America has dropped. There are many reasons for this decline. One of which is the abuse of opioids. However, there are some factors that each person can control. While the rate of preventable deaths has dropped from smoking, the rate of preventable deaths from obesity has risen. It’s time to take charge of your future and improve your lifestyle. Even if you’re not overweight, a sedentary lifestyle and poor eating habits are just as lethal.

Is the food you eat healthy and safe?

Eating healthy should be a top priority. That doesn’t mean it’s going to be easy. Everyone is rushed and overburdened with too much to do and too little time to do it. Fast food and microwave meals are often the answer. If you’re a gas station food guzzler or a drive through diner, it’s hard to break the habit, but you can do it. Eating whole foods, foods closest to their natural state, is one way to bump up your nutrition and lower your caloric intake.

It all takes planning.

It’s not easy to eat healthy. Everywhere you look there are sugary temptations beckoning to your taste buds. However, it’s well worth the effort. Meal planning can take an hour of your time, but will save time and money at the store. Spend one night a week planning your meals, including snacks, create a grocery list and make meals for the week on the weekend. Make extra for future use. During the week, you have meals ready to heat and eat. Nothing goes to waste AND nothing goes to waist. Whole foods provide all the nutrition without all the added calories.

Make an effort to move.

A program of regular exercise has been proven to add years to your life and life to those years. It boosts productivity, keeps you healthier, while building endurance, strength and flexibility. If you’re out of shape and don’t know where to start, a personal trainer is a viable option to help you with a personalized program of exercise. If you’re not ready to take it to the gym, focus on increasing your daily activity. Walk to lunch. Take the stairs. Ride a bike to work or to the store.

  • Even if you’re working out regularly, sitting longer than 55 minutes is detrimental to your health. Take a break every hour and get up and move.
  • Find a way to reduce stress. Stress is a killer. Find ways to deal with it. Deep breathing, meditation and even exercise can help.
  • If you’re not ready to change your entire diet, start by cutting out food with added sugar. It’s tough. Sugar is addictive. Have healthy snacks, like fresh fruit or nuts, available so you aren’t tempted to grab a donut or a candy bar.
  • What you drink is just as important as what you eat. Soft drinks contain a high amount of sugar. Even diet soft drinks can affect your health. Drink at least eight glasses of water a day.

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Do You Need A Wellness Expert?

Do You Need A Wellness Expert?

meditationYou know the feeling. You aren’t sick, yet you really don’t feel good, either. You feel stressed and basically out of sorts. If you’ve had regular check-ups and there’s nothing wrong, maybe you need a wellness expert. What does a wellness expert do? He or she helps people make lasting changes in their life that improve their health in the future. These positive changes can include everything from eating healthier and exercise to improving their mindset and reducing stress.

It’s not all about medication.

Sometimes, meditation is medication. That’s especially true for stress related illness. Food as Medicine is a new area in medical care. Exercise can boost your energy and improve your health. Taking care of yourself should be a top priority. Everyone is rushed today and often feel uncomfortable focusing on their own needs. In reality, it’s the most important thing anyone can do. If you aren’t functioning at your peak, you’ll accomplish less. People fail to realize that everything done on a daily basis has an effect on health.

A wellness expert can identify areas where change is important.

A wellness expert not only helps identify those areas, but also creates a plan to help you do it. While the focus is always on the person receiving the help, their families and employers benefit, too. Healthy employees are more productive when they’re fit. Parents that are fit have more energy for their children. Best of all, the habits developed with the help of a wellness expert transfer to those children by example.

When you use the services of a wellness expert, the help doesn’t end at a recommendation.

Wellness experts don’t just tell you to quit smoking, they help you get into a smoking cessation program and stay in touch to provide support. They don’t tell you to lose weight, they line you up with nutritional counseling and exercise programs. They help you make the changes that will affect you for years to come by locating the services and resources you need to make those changes easier and more successfully.

  • Is stress tearing you apart? There are several ways to deal with it. A wellness expert can identify many and help you find the one that fits your needs best.
  • Wellness experts are good for both employees and employers. For employers, they help reduce sick days and can lower the cost of health insurance. For employees, they provide a service that makes getting and being healthier easier.
  • Wellness experts often work with physicians to provide more information in the areas that keep you healthier, beyond just traditional medical care.
  • A wellness coach provides information on topics that relate to good health. They help educate clients in ways to live both a healthier lifestyle and a happier one.

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