That’s right. Your parents warned you; spend too much time in front of that TV or computer screen and you’ll be a total veggie. And here you are, eight hours (at least) in front of a computer screen at work under fluorescent lights, before you head home in traffic, watch the tube and continue work on your laptop.
We all know the worst thing to eat when the 3pm office slump hits: refined sugar and/or carbohydrates. That corn-syrupy, flavored latte, that stashed emergency candy bar, your organic raspberry “healthy” soda… All of these quick, easy snacks generally deliver the exact opposite reaction than the one you were looking for. Thus, you’re still tired and cranky (maybe more so since being tired and cranky tends to make us, well, more cranky). This is because eating (or drinking) a lot of highly-processed foods full of refined sugar and carbs can actually result in your body releasing too much insulin. Symptoms? About two hours later you are irritable, craving more sweets, sluggish and now you might have a headache (another reason to be cranky).Does that sound like your afternoon in cubicle-land?
Unfortunately, junk food is usually what’s most readily available in or near the office. (Leftover supermarket birthday cake in the break room, anyone?)
Well, yesterday at work I walked in to a wonderful surprise.
An anonymous corporate partner decided to donate a huge shipment of fresh veggies and strawberries from Tierra Miguel Farms to our entire office staff. Our conference room was strewn with summer squash and okra. I was so enthused, I scheduled a meeting, a lunch meeting. Now this is the kind of grub that can fuel an office. With ingredients from our office delivery, I was able to make a summer squash casserole, a zucchini bread, boiled beets and roasted carrots last night. (I ate the strawberries right at my desk.)
If you want fresh produce for your work space, or simply don’t have time to go to a local farmers’ market, consider a community supported agriculture (CSA) program with a local farm. Many farms have CSA programs that will deliver boxes of whatever is freshest either to your door or to a central pick-up location. Many of them include recipes for when you end up with a veggie that you don’t know what to do with.
As always though, when buying food it’s important to do your homework and make sure you are getting what you pay for. Is it all organic? Local? Or just when possible? My parents recently joined a CSA program only to find produce in their first shipment all the way from New Zealand. Having access to fresh, delicious and locally grown produce is one of the greatest foodie and health advantages of living in Southern California.
So…go take advantage!