Corporate Canteen Menus To Reduce Anxiety And Acidity At Work
Incorporating foods rich in complex carbohydrates, Omega-3 fatty acids, and probiotics can help reduce anxiety and acidity. Consider adding whole grains, leafy greens, yogurt, and fruits to your corporate canteen menu.
According to a survey conducted by the International Food Information Council Foundation in 2018, around 39 per cent of employees said that they eat at work daily, while another 37 per cent said they eat at work several times a week. Therefore, providing healthy food options in the corporate canteen can have a significant impact on the overall health of employees.
Corporate canteens are a vital part of many workplaces, providing employees with a convenient and affordable option for their daily meals. However, the food offered in these canteens can often be unhealthy, leading to digestive problems, anxiety, and other health issues. To promote employee well-being and productivity, it is crucial for corporate canteens to have a well-planned menu that includes options to reduce anxiety and acidity. By offering nutritious and balanced meals, corporate canteens can not only improve the physical health of employees but also enhance their mental health, leading to increased productivity and job satisfaction. In this context, a carefully crafted menu can ensure that employees are eating a healthy and balanced diet, which is essential for maintaining overall wellness and reducing workplace-related illnesses.
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A study published in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine in 2015 found that workplaces with healthy food options had a 3.3 per cent increase in employee productivity.
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The Link Between Anxiety And Acidity
Anxiety can trigger acidity. When you're anxious, your body produces stress hormones such as cortisol and adrenaline. These hormones can cause your digestive system to slow down, leading to an accumulation of acid in the stomach. This can result in acidity and its related symptoms.
On the other hand, acidity can also trigger anxiety. Acid reflux, which is a common symptom of acidity, can cause a burning sensation in the chest and throat, leading to discomfort and anxiety. People who experience frequent acid reflux may develop anxiety related to the fear of experiencing the symptoms.
The gut-brain axis, which is the connection between the digestive system and the brain, plays a crucial role in both anxiety and acidity. This axis includes a bidirectional communication between the central nervous system and the enteric nervous system, which is also known as the second brain due to its ability to control the digestive process independently of the central nervous system. The food we eat affects this axis, and certain foods can help reduce anxiety and acidity.
Anxiety is a common mental health condition that can cause physical symptoms such as abdominal discomfort, nausea, and acid reflux. These symptoms are thought to be related to the activation of the sympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for the "fight or flight" response.
The sympathetic nervous system can also stimulate the release of stress hormones such as cortisol, which can affect the digestive process. For example, cortisol can increase the production of stomach acid, leading to conditions such as gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) and peptic ulcers.
Additionally, anxiety can also affect the gut microbiota, which is the community of microorganisms that inhabit the gastrointestinal tract. Studies have shown that anxiety can alter the balance of these microorganisms, leading to an overgrowth of harmful bacteria and a decrease in beneficial bacteria. This imbalance can lead to gastrointestinal symptoms such as bloating, constipation, and diarrhoea.
The gut-brain axis plays a crucial role in how our body perceives and responds to stress and the food we consume. Understanding the connection between the two can help individuals manage their physical and mental health symptoms more effectively, whether through lifestyle changes, medication, or therapy.
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Foods That Make Acidity Worse
Acidity or acid reflux is a condition that occurs when the stomach acid backs up into the oesophagus, causing discomfort and a burning sensation in the chest. This condition can be triggered by certain foods, and avoiding them can help alleviate the symptoms. In this blog post, we will discuss the foods that make acidity worse and why.
Citrus Fruits: Citrus fruits like oranges, grapefruits, lemons, and limes are high in acid and can worsen acidity. They can also irritate the lining of the oesophagus and increase the production of stomach acid. If you're prone to acidity, it's best to avoid citrus fruits or consume them in moderation.
Tomatoes: Tomatoes are a rich source of Vitamin C and antioxidants, but they are also highly acidic. Eating raw tomatoes or tomato-based products like sauces and ketchup can aggravate acidity. If you can't avoid tomatoes altogether, try cooking them first or using them in small amounts.
Fried And Fatty Foods: Fried and fatty foods are hard to digest, and they can cause the stomach to produce more acid, leading to acidity. Foods like French fries, fried chicken, and fatty meats should be avoided if you have acidity. Instead, opt for lean proteins like chicken breast or fish.
Spicy Foods: Spicy foods like chillis, hot sauce, and spicy curries can cause the stomach to produce more acid, leading to acidity. If you can't resist spicy foods, reduce the spice in your dishes or opting for milder versions.
Carbonated Drinks: Carbonated drinks like soda and beer can cause acidity by increasing the pressure in the stomach and forcing the acid up into the oesophagus. If you're prone to acidity, it's best to avoid carbonated drinks altogether or opt for non-carbonated beverages like water, coconut water, juices and herbal tea.
Chocolate: Chocolate is a trigger for many people with acidity because it contains caffeine and theobromine, both of which can relax the oesophagal sphincter, allowing the acid to flow back into the oesophagus. If you're prone to acidity, it's best to avoid chocolate or consume it in small amounts.
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Foods That Make Anxiety Worse
Caffeine: While caffeine can give you a temporary boost of energy, it can also exacerbate anxiety symptoms. Studies have shown that caffeine can increase heart rate, blood pressure, and cortisol levels, all of which can contribute to feelings of anxiety and panic.
Sugar: Sugar can worsen anxiety symptoms. When we consume sugar, our blood sugar levels spike, which can lead to feelings of irritability, restlessness, and nervousness. Additionally, sugar can also disrupt our sleep patterns, which can exacerbate anxiety symptoms.
Alcohol: While alcohol is often used as a way to relax and unwind, it can actually make anxiety symptoms worse. Alcohol is a depressant that can interfere with our brain chemistry, leading to feelings of depression and anxiety. Additionally, alcohol can disrupt our sleep patterns, which can further exacerbate anxiety symptoms.
Processed Foods: Processed foods, such as fast food, chips, and other snacks, are often high in refined carbohydrates, sugar, and unhealthy fats. These foods can contribute to inflammation in the body, which has been linked to an increased risk of anxiety and depression. Additionally, processed foods can disrupt our gut microbiome, which can also have a negative impact on mental health.
Gluten: While not everyone with anxiety is sensitive to gluten, some studies have suggested that gluten may exacerbate anxiety symptoms in those who are sensitive to it. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye, and it can cause inflammation in the gut, leading to symptoms such as bloating, gas, and diarrhoea. Additionally, gluten can also interfere with the absorption of important nutrients that are essential for mental health, such as B vitamins and magnesium.
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Foods That Ease Acidity
Oatmeal: Oatmeal is an excellent food for reducing acidity. It is high in fibre, which helps absorb excess stomach acid and promotes digestion. Additionally, oatmeal is a whole-grain food that can reduce the risk of heartburn and acid reflux.
Ginger: Ginger has long been used for its medicinal properties and is a popular remedy for reducing acidity. It contains compounds that can help neutralise stomach acid and improve digestion. Ginger also has anti-inflammatory properties that can help reduce inflammation in the stomach and oesophagus.
Bananas: Bananas are a great source of fibre, potassium, and other essential vitamins and minerals. They are also rich in natural antacids that can help reduce acid reflux and heartburn. Additionally, bananas contain enzymes that help aid digestion and improve gut health.
Vegetables: Broccoli, cauliflower, and kale are rich in vitamins and minerals that can help ease acidity. They are also high in fibre, which can help reduce the risk of heartburn and acid reflux.
Lean proteins: Peas and beans are easy to digest and can help reduce acidity. They are also a great source of essential amino acids that can help improve gut health and promote digestion.
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Why Do These Foods Help Ease Acidity?
The foods listed above help ease acidity due to several reasons. First, they are rich in fibre, which helps absorb excess stomach acid and promote digestion. Additionally, many of these foods contain natural antacids that can help reduce acid reflux and heartburn. Antacids work by neutralising stomach acid and reducing inflammation in the stomach and oesophagus. Moreover, these foods are also easy to digest and do not put pressure on the stomach, which can reduce the risk of acid reflux and heartburn.
Foods That Ease Anxiety
Dark Chocolate: Dark chocolate contains a compound called flavonoids, which has been shown to reduce stress and anxiety levels. Flavonoids have a positive effect on mood and can help reduce inflammation, which is often associated with anxiety. Additionally, dark chocolate contains magnesium, a mineral that can help relax the muscles and calm the nervous system.
Almonds: Almonds are an excellent source of magnesium, which can help calm the nervous system and reduce anxiety symptoms. Additionally, almonds are high in Vitamin E, which has been shown to have a positive effect on brain health and can help reduce inflammation in the body.
Avocado: Avocado is a nutrient-dense food that is high in healthy fats and antioxidants. The healthy fats in avocados can help improve brain function and reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression. Additionally, avocado contains Vitamin B6, which can help regulate mood and reduce stress hormones in the body.
Spinach: Spinach is a leafy green vegetable that is high in magnesium, which can help relax the muscles and calm the nervous system. Additionally, spinach is high in Vitamin C, which can help reduce stress hormones in the body. Incorporating spinach into your diet can be a helpful step in managing anxiety symptoms.
Incorporating these foods into your diet can be a valuable step in managing anxiety symptoms. These foods contain nutrients that positively impact mental health—reducing inflammation, regulating mood, and calming the nervous system. While food alone may not be enough to manage severe anxiety, incorporating these foods into a healthy diet can be a helpful complementary strategy to other treatments recommended by your healthcare provider.
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At UR.life Corporate Wellness, we make sure our evidence-based approach makes employees thrive in all aspects of their lives. We help you to invest in your well-being through our seamless intervention.
We help your team and employees build mental and physical resilience by recognising their strengths, managing stress, and nurturing healthier bodies. Our holistic wellness services include online content delivery and custom wellness plans that are in line with your company culture, values, and business goals.
Boost existing well-being programmes or start a new initiative that puts employees first. With our corporate wellness packages, you can ensure that each employee is cared for in a cost-efficient manner. With our medical professionals by your side, routine health check-ups will never be an issue. Advanced laboratory technologies back UR.Life’s Occupation Health Centers (OHC), and with highly qualified experts/technicians, we’re committed to delivering trusted and quality healthcare. Also, UR.Life’s Occupational Health Center (OHC) can help employees manage anxiety and acidity symptoms.
With the UR.Life Canteen Assessment, you can determine whether your organisation’s canteens are healthy, hygienic and catered for your employees. Ensure better health and productivity for your employees when you work with us to take care of their dietary requirements.
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