We all know that we should eat a balanced diet and get our 5 a day, but how many of us actually do?
Data records of over 40,000 working adults in the UK from vielife online health and wellbeing assessments show that 36 percent of working people have poor nutrition, creating personal health risks and losing 3.5 weeks of productive time each per year – an urgent wake-up call for employers and businesses.
Only one out of ten people said they eat the recommended six portions of fibre per day and less than one in five people manage to eat their five portions of fruit and vegetables.
The study shows the emergence of four ‘Nutrition Attrition’ factors impacting the workplace. Poor levels of nutrition amongst workers are closely linked to poor job satisfaction, low resilience to stress, higher absenteeism and reduced productivity.
Nutrition Attrition: The facts:
Job Satisfaction suffers
People with a ‘good’ nutrition score have a 6 per cent higher job satisfaction score and 15 per cent higher mood score than people with a ‘poor’ nutrition score.
Stress levels increase
38 per cent of people with a poor nutrition score have high stress compared to 19% of people with good nutrition.
Respondents with poor nutrition scores report 50 per cent more sickness absence than those with good nutrition scores. That’s 4.8 days per year per employee against 3.2 days per year, costing the average UK organisation an extra 576 days for every 1000 people employed.
People with poor nutritional balance report being 15 per cent less productive than those with good nutritional balance. This equals 2.8 hours per week difference, or for a 46 working week year, 16 days of lost productive time per employee.
Tony Massey, vielife’s chief medical officer, says: “UK firms cannot afford to ignore the impact of Nutrition Attrition which is not only rivalling but also contributing to rises in other big personal and work life issues like sleep and stress.”