Episode 120: The Impact of Diet on Productivity


“Food has a direct impact on our cognitive performance, which is why a poor decision at lunch can derail an entire afternoon.” – Ron Friedman

diet on productivity

Dear Podcaster, we are not gonna tell you what to eat.

It says right here in our notes. We are not nutritionists or dieticians, but we are going to share with you what’s working for us. Today’s podcast is all about four surprising ways your diet impacts your productivity.

Last week we shared how to bring mindfulness practices into our daily lives in Episode 119.

In a past life, Brad spent a lot of time eating bread, pasta, rice, potatoes, beer, sugary stuff, cookies, and everything like that. And guess what happened? Not so fun giant insulin spikes, which led to big crashes, and clearly that’s a major productivity loss.

While growing up in San Antonio, Texas, I had my fair share of eating the wrong (and now, right) foods for me. I would go through my day feeling foggy and totally drag on my productivity. Poor diet can also affect mental effectiveness, irritability, low energy levels, reduced ability to think clearly, even higher levels of stress and depression.

So as creative business owners, we understand how important it is to pay attention to what we put into our body.

Here are four ways your diet impacts your productivity:

1. Eating the wrong food for you. For example, you may be somebody that thrives on carbohydrates, but maybe there’s something else that doesn’t sit well with you. In Texas, I had one friend that was allergic to pinto beans, which we ate all of the time. So, I couldn’t even imagine not being able to eat refried beans with my Mexican Food. And what I found was that when I eat wheat-filled products, especially in combination with dairy, I woke up with a massive hangover the next morning. So I’ve been gluten-free since the early 90’s.

2. Not eating enough food. This causes your blood sugar to get really low, and really impacts your ability to focus and to make decisions. There have been some amazing studies done in companies. When people weren’t eating breakfast or a healthy lunch, they completely lost their ability to focus became super unproductive. Since that impacts their bottom line, they’re really willing to do something about it. So, a lot of companies, like one of our favorite companies, Ontraport provides healthy meals to their employees on a regular basis. As entrepreneurs, we can prepare our food ahead of time even when we work from home.

3. Irregular sleep cycles. This is one that Brad’s been working on a lot, it’s not one I struggle with as much. Food and sleep go hand in hand, in terms of supporting each other. Brad puts sleep higher than diet on the list of things you need to get right for productivity, but diet is just a close second. Caffeine in the afternoon is a tough one, especially for folks like me where that caffeine takes a long time to metabolize in my body. Eating the wrong food at night can just do craziness with your sleep patterns, from digestion, from mental things, stress levels, all that type of stuff.

4. How often you’re getting sick. Look at how often you get sick, and how long you’re sick for. I think to a certain extent, especially if you have kids, you’re always being exposed to new and wonderful things. There’s a huge difference between you feeling bad for two days and knocking it out, or that cold that gets its way into your system, and sticks with you for three weeks. 

Fascinated and want to dig more into diet and productivity? Check out the full podcast on YouTube!

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IN THIS EPISODE YOU’LL LEARN:

  • The ultimate food expert who has your best interests at heart (most of the time)
  • How to make better food choices by changing the way you prep meals
  • When stress goes up, what must come down…

Links

The Case Against Sugar by Gary Taubes

Good Calories Bad Calories by Gary Taubes

The Links Between Diet and Productivity Forbes article

What You Eat Affects Your Productivity Harvard Business Review article

4 Surprising Ways Your Diet is Affecting Your Productivity NBC News article

You can also subscribe to this podcast on our Youtube channel.

Transcript

 

Minette Riordan, Ph.D. on EmailMinette Riordan, Ph.D. on FacebookMinette Riordan, Ph.D. on InstagramMinette Riordan, Ph.D. on Twitter
Minette Riordan, Ph.D.

Dr. Minette Riordan is an award-winning entrepreneur with 17 years experience in media, marketing and sales. She is a lover of art, poetry and mythology and a complete geek who digs discussing how businesses work. One of her core values is continuous improvement; she is a seeker, wanderer and adventurer who loves dragons and coffee. Most days you can find her supporting her creative clients to build profitable businesses. And on other days you can find her in her art studio covered in paint.



About Minette Riordan, Ph.D.

Dr. Minette Riordan is an award-winning entrepreneur with 17 years experience in media, marketing and sales. She is a lover of art, poetry and mythology and a complete geek who digs discussing how businesses work. One of her core values is continuous improvement; she is a seeker, wanderer and adventurer who loves dragons and coffee. Most days you can find her supporting her creative clients to build profitable businesses. And on other days you can find her in her art studio covered in paint.

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