7 Design Ideas to Improve Health in the Workplace

December 9, 2015
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There have been countless reports over the last few years about how life in the office could be slowly killing you. From eyestrain to back problems, there’s no shortage of health risks that come out of your day-to-day activities. But there are several initiatives that offices can take in an effort to reduce negative health effects, including altering the overall design of the workplace.

1. Use Wood Furniture

There have been countless reports over the last few years about how life in the office could be slowly killing you. From eyestrain to back problems, there’s no shortage of health risks that come out of your day-to-day activities. But there are several initiatives that offices can take in an effort to reduce negative health effects, including altering the overall design of the workplace.

1. Use Wood Furniture

Interestingly enough, switching to wood furniture instead of plastic or steel in the office can significantly improve health. Studies show that those who use wood office furniture have reduced stress levels, lower pain perception, fewer sick days, improved concentration, and better interpersonal relations. Besides that, wood furniture is sustainable and aesthetically pleasing!

2. Offer Sit and Stand Desks

These desks are specially designed with hinges to rise up when you would like to stand and work at your desk and lower again when you want to sit. This is a much cheaper and safer way to promote exercising while you work, and can help reduce obesity and improve the cardiovascular health of your employees.

3. Install “Happy” Lamps

In dark offices with very little natural light, depression and anxiety are very common.  The body needs vitamin D absorbency from the sun in order to fight off depressive symptoms. You might not be able to install windows in your office, but you can bring in light therapy lamps, also known as “happy lamps,” to mimic the sun’s light.

4. Separate Work Stations

This method can be used to promote more activity in your workers. When employees stay seated for more than an hour, their ability to burn fat decreases by 90 percent, according to studies. Separating workstations is a great way to promote more activity, as this will require your employees to get up and walk around more.

5. Bring in an Air Purifier

The air you breathe has an enormous impact on your health, even though it’s something that most people don’t think about very often. However, studies have shown that poor indoor air quality leads to a decrease in productivity and an increase in absenteeism. The solution is to install an air purifier in your HVAC system, in order to keep the air cleaner. It’s a simple fix that will make a huge difference.

6. Have an On-Site Gym

Some companies can’t afford this one, but if you can, consider an on-site gym installation. You can also offer incentives to your employees to use it or give them a special time slot. With the option to exercise during breaks, employees can escape sitting disease and work on their overall health, even while at work.

7. Change the Colors

Finally, consider the mental health of your employees. Interestingly, the colors in each room can have a profound effect. For example, yellows, oranges, and certain shades of green can make your employees feel sick, while calming blues can relieve stress. In addition, loud colors, like red, have been known to increase creativity, but can also raise blood pressure.

The design of your office can be just as important as the foods you provide in the vending machine. All it takes is a little more awareness and an attention to detail in order to promote