Lunch Break Hacks

September 22, 2020
| Created by Heather Lieber, MS, RDN, CD

Feed your face, rest your brain, and wind down for 30 minutes so you can go into the rest of your shift with renewed motivation. Here are some hacks to get the most out of your lunch break:

  • TAKE ONE. If you are allotted a specific amount of time for your lunch break, use it! The drive to work through lunch and crank through tasks can be strong, but keep in mind you will likely think clearer and have a renewed perspective on a task by taking a break to fuel up.
  • Get a change of scenery. If you work at a desk, try taking your lunch outside, to the break room…anywhere other than where you are during your normal workflow.
  • Bring equipment or a dish that makes it feel more like an event. A ceramic plate and bowl could be the upgrade you need to be excited about your lunch break.
  • Try to include three food groups with one being fruit or vegetables (choose from protein, grain/starch, fruit, vegetable, or dairy). This will insure your meal is filling and nutritious.
  • Set a timer and designate five minutes of your break for deep breathing, meditating, or simply resting without the distraction of a phone. This can be the mental reset you need before heading back to work.

We all have someor mostdays when we don’t pack a lunch. This may mean you end up eating your favorite takeout, last minute fast food, or scrounging up snacks that you left in your bag from the day before. To mix things up, consider Harmons for some inexpensive, simple lunch solutions:

  • 7-grain roll with a nut butter packet or chicken salad and in-season fruit
  • Prepackaged Kitchen salads
  • Prepackaged Kitchen meals for one (try the grilled salmon with asparagus or grilled chicken with spaghetti!)
  • Lynn Wilson Bean and Cheese or Amy’s Breakfast frozen single burritos with a sliced bell pepper, tortilla chips, and Harmons guacamole
  • Premade salad kit + canned chicken or beans + slice of artisan bread
  • Salad bar (infinite add-in combinations, you’ll never try them all!)

If you choose quick microwaveable pasta dishes or frozen meals, there are a couple of things to watch for. Compare your options against each other and find the one that has the least amount of sodium on the nutrition facts panel. The next thing to watch for is how well rounded the meal is. Consider pairing with a seasonal fruit or veggie sticks, or adding canned chicken or a hard boiled egg for protein, depending on what food group is missing.

Whatever your lunch break looks like, find what works for you to make it something to look forward to. Nutritious food choices can help you to feel energized rather than sluggish, leaving you ready to attack the rest of your workday. For more ideas on how to spice up your lunch break, contact dietitian@harmonsgrocery.com.