Wednesday, 14 May, 2008 12:40 PM
Percent of U.S. Employees Have Gained Weight at Their Current Jobs,
CareerBuilder.com Study Finds
Offers Tips to Help Make Healthy Choices on the Job This Summer
courtesy of www.abc.net.au
CHICAGO -- Swimsuit
season is right around the corner and for many people that means
one thing: dieting. In an office setting, though, cutting back on
calories and finding time to exercise can seem like an impassable
hurdle, as a new CareerBuilder.com survey reports that 45 percent
of workers have gained weight at their current jobs, similar to
last year's findings. The survey was conducted from February 11
through March 13, 2008 among 7,688 workers.
Twenty-six percent of
employees report they have gained more than ten pounds and 12 percent
say they gained more than 20 pounds while in their present positions.
Comparing genders, women are more likely (50 percent) than men (42
percent) to say they have gained weight at their current jobs.
53 percent of financial services employees and 52 percent of government
employees say they have gained weight in their current positions;
the highest recorded weight gain among industries surveyed. Retail
and leisure and hospitality had the lowest percentage of employees
gain weight in their current roles, at 36 percent and 41 percent,
"Weight gain can
be quite common in the workplace, especially when the winter months
keep most of us cooped up all day and calorie-laden treats seem
to wait around every corner," said Rosemary Haefner, vice president
of Human Resources for CareerBuilder.com. "As the weather warms
up and people are more likely to get in a healthy mindset, it's
a great time of year to be more aware of your health, get active
and be more cognizant of your food choices."
Eating habits can often
be a culprit in workplace weight gain. Nearly two-in-five (38 percent)
percent of employees surveyed eat out for lunch twice or more per
week, making it difficult to control portions and calorie intake.
An additional 12 percent buy their lunch out of a vending machine
at least once a week.
Snacking can also be
a slippery slope for those trying to cut back on calories, as two-thirds
(66 percent) of employees surveyed snack at least once a day, while
nearly 25 percent snack at least twice a day.
One of the ways employees
can cut back on workplace weight gain is by heading to the gym during
lunch hour, but according to the survey, only 9 percent of employees
work up a sweat in the middle of the day.
More employees may be
inclined to take advantage of gym facilities during lunch and outside
of work, though, as 28 percent of companies now provide gym passes,
workout facilities or wellness benefits.
recommends the following tips for fending off workplace weight
Start the day off right -- Eating a high-protein and fiber-filled
breakfast can provide the energy you need to get you to
lunch and avoid
the temptation of break room donuts, candy or other high-fat
Stay hydrated -- Sometimes a snack craving can be mistaken
dehydration. Be sure to keep water or another healthy beverage
desk throughout the day so that you can hydrate freely.
Write it down -- Keeping a nutrition and food journal can
track how your snacks and meals add up during the day, allowing
notice when you overindulge.
Mix up your routine -- Every little bit of activity helps,
so take the
stairs to your floor, walk over to co-workers instead of
emailing them or try parking your car farther away from
Keep your cool -- Stress can fuel poor eating habits, as
you can tend
to overeat or make inadequate food choices when you're feeling
overwhelmed. Try to manage stress with regular exercise
and speak with
a supervisor if you're workload is drowning you.
This survey was conducted
online within the U.S. by Harris Interactive on behalf of CareerBuilder.com
among 7,688 U.S. employees (employed full-time; not self-employed)
ages 18 and over between February 11, and March 13, 2008, respectively.
With a pure probability sample of 7,688 one could say with a 95
percent probability that the overall results have a sampling error
of +/- 1.1 percentage points. Sampling error for data from sub-samples
is higher and varies.