Workers consuming 800 extra calories a week while commuting

By Drum Digital
26 August 2016

Grabbing a croissant or muffin on the way to work may be convenient, but it could be adding inches to your waistline.

Research claims that the average U.K. commuter adds almost 800 calories to their diet every week by snacking during their journey to and from work.

The habit, which adds the equivalent of three chocolate bars weekly, could be damaging the health of millions and may even shorten commuters’ lives, according to a report conducted by the Royal Society of Public Health (RSPH). Commuters in London have an average journey of 79 minutes while it is just under 45 minutes for people living in Wales.

RSPH polls suggest that 33 per cent snack en route, with 29 per cent stopping in at fast food restaurants.

The organisation also found that travelling to work by rail, bus and car is linked to increased stress, higher blood pressure and weight, and reduced time available for healthy activities such as cooking, exercise and sleeping.

Shirley Cramer, Chief Executive of RSPH, said the report findings show that for an increasing number of people, the daily commute is having a damaging effect on health and wellbeing.

“As the length of our commute increases this impact is getting worse, including by contributing to rising levels of stress, adding to our waistlines, or eating into time we could otherwise spend doing activities which enhance our health and wellbeing such as sleep, exercise or time spent with friends or family,” she stated, adding that she’d like to see employers increase flexible and home working in order to ease strain on roads and rail networks. “Taking public transport should be encouraged and made as attractive as possible, so there needs to be greater consideration given to supporting passenger’s health and wellbeing.

Some 58 per cent of the 1,500 Britons polled felt that flexible hours would improve their health.

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