Surviving the Office Munchies

It’s Friday.  You’re sitting at your desk working on an email when all the sudden….the delicious smell of pizza comes wafting through the office as your boss booms “Free Pizza!!  Come to the conference room!”  Now the nice turkey sandwich on whole grain bread looks absolutely WIMPY in comparison.  What do you do?  Grab a slice or two (and feel guilty about it the rest of the day?).  Resist the urge and get picked on by your coworkers for being no fun?  Here are my suggestions for how to manage  the office food fest and come out in one slim piece without feeling deprived.

Scenario 1:

Free pizza in the office.  You’re hungry.  You REALLY REALLY want a slice but you don’t want to wreck your whole day eating-wise.

My advice?  Go for it.  Have one slice – or two if the pizza is cut in small pieces (if there is a veggie pizza then that’s definitely my top pick, followed by plain cheese — stay away from pepperoni which is high in saturated fat and sodium).  If the pizza looks greesy definitely blot it with a napkin.  Try to have a salad or a piece of fruit to fill you up a little more and balance your less healthy choice with something a little more wholesome.  Remember that your diet is your bank account – so since you ate something a little unhealthy, try to balance it with healthy choices the rest of the day.

Scenario 2:

It’s 3 o’clock.  You’re exhausted and craving sweets and it’s someone birthday today.  Half eaten cake is sitting in the office kitchen just screaming “Eat me!!”.

Resist the urge.  You’re not really hungry, and you’re probably just needing a little energy.  Instead, take a little breather from work, go outside and take a walk and grab yourself an iced coffee with skim milk.  The fresh air will help wake you up and the coffee will give you a little extra boost to push through the rest of your day.

Scenario 3:

You’re at an office meeting for the entire day and for lunch everyone decided they want to order pad thai from the favorite office spot.

Usually takeout in New York is 4 times what a normal serving should be.  Pad thai is an OK choice (not the best on the menu).  Instead, try to order a lighter stir fry dish with extra veggies and chicken, shrimp or tofu and light on the sauce (i love spicy basil stir fry or ginger stir fry — they offer at most thai places and it’s relatively light and flavorful), steamed shrimp spring rolls are also a great choice.  If that’s not possible, or you’re really craving pad thai – try to split an entree with a colleague, that way not only will you not eat WAY too much, you’ll also save a buck or two!

Remember — no matter what the office situation, there are always healthy options around, you just have to be creative!  And if you do slip up and have the slice of birthday cake — don’t worry about it and feel guilty, just make sure that you eat healthier the rest of the day.

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1 Comment

  1. Rachel says:

    I have been here ONE too many times. My office always seemed to be overflowing with free food. And free food is hard to resist. Thanks for the post, this is really helpful!

    Like

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