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Italy discovers a strong connection between food habits and work performances

In the Milan area, more and more companies focus of workers' wellness

Italy discovers a strong connection between food habits and work performances

Claudia Astarita

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A productive employee needs to eat good food. Healthy and light food can definitely change the performance of every employee, and sandwiched should be cancelled from any "working diet". A recent research conducted by the Italian employment agency Openjobmetis discovered that not only employees feel better when they have the chance to bring some good food from home for their lunch break (rice salad, cold pasta, but even lasagne and cannelloni) and skip the sandwich ritual, but they also believe that companies should do something to both influence and improve they workers' food habits.

Even skeptical workers agree, although they stress that it can be too complicated to organized some home-made food for every lunch, and that it is unhealthy to have lunch in front of a computer as there is usually no common room where to enjoy a "real break".

Increasing workers' wellness within the company is crucial to improve their performances, and some Italian groups are eventually moving in this direction. In the Milan area, a particularly virtuous example is the one of EidosMedia, an Italian company producing software. They have recently opened a gym for workers and they are about to launch new yoga classes. The Italian branch of the German multinational KSB has a gym, a library, and an orchard for those who enjoy reading, chatting, or having lunch with colleagues outside (eating some fruits, if they wish). The national Consortium for recovery and recycling of paper Comieco offered a step counter to every employee, and every thirty days the whole company meet to nominate and reward the "walker of the month". Finally, General Electric has launched a broad "wellness package" including free breast cancer screenings, a gym room, a relaxing area, healthy snacks, and free consultations to help employees with their diet, to cope with stressful situations, and to reduce their dependence from smoking.

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