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Do you eat lunch at your desk? Better question, should you?
About 6 out of 10 Americans eat their lunch at their desk. Has efficiency gone too far? - photo by Sarah Anderson
About 62 percent of workers say they eat lunch at their desks, according to The New York Times earlier this year.

And changes in eating habits mean people are eating alone about half the time, and not just at work, according to market research company NPD. Its all part of a more individualized lifestyle, NPD stated.

The Guardian reported that desktop dining is the natural result of a work culture that focuses on speed and efficiency."

And while it may seem sad that so many of us are masticating alone, with only the glow of our screens for company, a lot of people actually prefer it that way, writes Arwa Mahdawi for The Guardian.

Still, this takes away from the idea of the workplace as a collaborative experience, according to The New York Times.

Workplace satisfaction is so much higher if you eat with your colleagues, Brian Wansink, a professor and the director of Cornell Universitys Food and Brand Lab, told The New York Times. You like your job more and you like your colleagues better."

A bright side to desktop dining might be smaller portions The New York Times noted studies that showed being around others makes a person eat more by an average of 44 percent, a percentage that rises the more people there are.

On the other hand, this benefit may be negated by workplace snacking a study of 122 employees found an average of 476 calories in food stashed away in their desks, with one person stockpiling 3,000 calories worth, according to The New York Times.

Theres also the fact that eating lunch at your desk means just sitting there and contributing to a lifestyle that for about 86 percent of Americans is all too sedentary, with most of their days spent in inactivity, The Huffington Post stated.

Bloomberg has tips for those who find a true lunch break positively pass.

  1. Take your mind off work and let it wander. Its more likely to come back with good ideas.
  2. Eat your fruits and veggies. They are still good for you.
  3. When youre stuck on something, seek out a crowd. Research suggests that the background noise of a caf or coffeehouse helps get the creative process going and flowing.
  4. Dont work while eating. Studies have found that taking breaks produces better work results, and you feel better as well.
We know that when we work continuously without taking intentional breaks, there is a distinct point of diminishing returns, Annie Perrin, executive vice president of faculty and content at consultancy Energy Project, told Bloomberg. When we break regularly, we maintain a higher quantity and quality over the course of the day.
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