Does your office often have cakes, biscuits and sweets being passed around? Then your office may be part of the ever growing ‘cake culture’!
Dentists have recently criticised the ‘workplace cake culture.’ Professor Nigel Hunt, Dean of the Faculty of the Royal College of Surgeons, has warned that the UK needs “a culture change” within the workplace.
There has long been a ‘cake’ culture within UK workplaces; whether it’s a co-worker bringing in some sweet treats from their recent holidays, an office birthday, or maybe even just managers wanting to reward their staff.
Yet, Hunt has said that this is contributing to the current obesity epidemic and poor oral health in adults. 64,984 adults were treated for tooth decay from 2014-15 and it is thought that the ‘cake culture’ is affecting it. The Faculty of the Royal College of Surgeons have provided some tips for the workplace:
- Consider switching to low sugar alternatives – Nuts or a fruit platter is a far healthier option.
- Avoid snacking throughout the day, and keep the eating of sweet treats to meal times only.
- The position/whereabouts of the sweets – If the sweets are sitting in the middle of everyone’s work space, then they are more likely to be consumed. Whereas, if they are kept in the canteen or in a cupboard hidden away, they are less likely to be eaten arbitrarily.
- Reduce the portion sizes of the sweets – Cut smaller slices of cake if it is someone’s birthday or only take one biscuit instead of two.
- Keep a “sugar schedule” – An example of this is, if there is a birthday during the week, a birthday cake will be presented on Friday. This will stop cake being eaten on multiple days of the week and will keep Friday as a treat day. Overall a sugar schedule should help you keep track and limit your sugar intake.
Tom Fry, a spokesman for the National Obesity Forum, has said that even though it may be a gesture of goodwill, bringing in cake to the office isn’t doing your colleagues any favours.
What do you think about the ‘workplace cake culture’ and do you think we need to change our ways?