UK employees who work from home are more likely to eat indulgent foods, snack between meals and work longer hours than their office-based colleagues, new research has revealed.
In a study by Compass Group and Mintel, more than half of UK workers said they struggled to maintain healthy diets while at work, with employees working from home finding it harder to resist temptation.
Around half (52%) of UK home-based and hybrid workers admitted to regularly eating indulgent foods during their working day. Employees who work from home were also found to be more likely to eat high-calorie snacks such as chocolate during their breaks (31% of home workers versus 25% of office-based employees).
Commenting on the findings, Ryan Holmes, culinary director, B&I, at Compass Group UK & Ireland, said: “Workers across the UK are increasingly looking to their employers to help them make healthier choices, by providing healthy, sustainable, and innovative food experiences in the workplace, which they can’t easily replicate at home.”
Six in 10 UK hybrid workers also told the study that they tend to work longer hours when working from home, while 60% of home-based workers said they eat lunch alone (compared to 45% of office-based employees).
However, UK employees who work from home reported having more frequent and higher quality breaks than in the traditional workplace, with 57% of hybrid workers saying they can truly relax during breaks at home, compared with 44% for breaks in the office.
UK home-based workers were found to be nearly four times more likely to exercise during the working day, and three times more likely to go outside and spend time in nature during their work breaks. They were also found to be better at avoiding screen-time during breaks – 39% have a break from screens versus 27% of office-based employees.