Chris Buchanan
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How fresh fruit helps improve your concentration at work

Finding it hard to concentrate in the office? You’re certainly not alone. Early starts, late nights, long commutes and hours in front of a computer screen can take their toll on your ability to focus on your work. And with that lack of mental acuity comes lower productivity, negatively impacting the quantity and quality of the work you deliver.

What can make the problem even worse is reaching for shortcuts to give you a temporary boost. It’s easy to go for an extra cup of coffee when you’re feeling sluggish in the office, but you may well find yourself crashing not long after. Coffee, energy drinks, sugary snacks and other shortcuts can end up making it even harder to concentrate.

Best foods for low blood sugar

There is a good reason you might reach for a snack, though: low blood sugar. Our bodies create glucose from the food and beverages we consume, which gives us energy. That’s why an empty stomach can make it harder to concentrate. Your body is crying out for more energy to work with.

Not all food is broken down at the same rate though, which is why high-sugar, low-fiber snacks like pastries or candy can give you an immediate boost that doesn’t last all that long. Healthier snacks take longer to be broken down and as such give you a more sustained release of energy. And among the healthiest snacks to eat is fresh fruit, which is why businesses throughout the Houston or Dallas/Fort Worth areas look to ORCHARD At The OFFICE for their office fruit delivery needs.

Research on the benefits of fruits

There have been many studies into the benefits that fresh fruit and vegetables can have on your daily mental well-being, including your ability to concentrate. A study of 405 young adults found that fruit and vegetables were linked to a noticeable increase in their happiness and in their feelings of curiosity and creativity. There also may be links between keeping blood glucose at a steady level and greater self-control, which means greater control over your attention, impulses, stress and emotions.

Fruits like bananas, apples, pears, oranges and plums offer different levels of fiber and fructose that can help maintain your blood sugar levels throughout your work day. They are also full of vitamins and minerals, which benefit your overall health. The occasional cookie, doughnut or slice of pie can be a nice treat, but fruit and vegetables are snacks you can eat every day without adversely impacting your health or concentration.

Tips for staying productive at work

Getting your recommended daily intake of fresh fruit and vegetables is a key part of maintaining healthiness and well-being, thus increasing your productivity. To maximize their effect, you should also make sure you maintain an all-around healthy lifestyle. This includes getting plenty of sleep, staying hydrated and taking regular breaks from work. Even a short five-minute break can give your mind a little bit of breathing space. It’s also the perfect time to help yourself to a healthy fresh fruit snack! Regular exercise, a healthy diet and plenty of rest all contributes to keeping your mental well-being as healthy as it can be, thus increasing your happiness and your productivity.

To inquire about fresh fruit delivery for your office, visit, e-mail or call 972.295.9091.

By Joe Towner, the Roving Rhubarb, on behalf of ORCHARD At The OFFICE

Chris Buchanan
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ORCHARD At The OFFICE Gift.jpg This gift basket from ORCHARD At The OFFICE is one example of the great edible tokens of gratitude available for delivery to Metroplex businesses.

Soon, the holiday season will have come and gone. But for those in offices throughout the Metroplex tasked with giving gifts to clients or fellow staff members, the search for That Special Something is a year-round proposition. What can you give that special client as a way of saying thanks? Fortunately, the Dallas/Fort Worth area is a veritable cornucopia of edible gift ideas, and I’d like to share three of my favorites, run by local companies, that work for any office environment while being unique and high-quality enough to really stand out.

  1. FRESH FRUIT GIFT BASKETS. I highly recommend the gift basket from ORCHARD At The OFFICE, a Richardson-based organization which specializes in premium-quality office fresh fruit delivery. Their gift basket is a great deal: for $40 plus a $5 delivery fee, the recipient will receive a great wicker basket filled with a fantastic mix of delectable whole fruit with a handwritten note. The basket comes with all the classics you’d expect: Dole bananas, quality apples, citrus, a rainbow of pears…but what I really enjoy are the more exotic varieties they pop into the gift baskets, such as papaya, kiwi, and peaches. The Seckel pears in particular are a delight: they’re a little larger than a golf ball, with a skin that fades between green and red, and a sweetness which is elegant without being overpowering. It’s a great package that encourages healthy snacking, and as such is the gift that keeps on giving!
  2. PREMIUM ROAST COFFEE. Our workplace has become completely sold on Eiland Coffee Roasters, another small company in Richardson which imports an amazing assortment of beans from all over the world, roasts them onsite, and packages them up to suit the palates of coffee cognoscenti throughout the Metroplex. Clay Eiland and his knowledgeable staff have the uncanny ability to turn virtually anyone into a coffee connoisseur with the purchase of just a couple pounds. It happened to me: a year ago I could scarcely taste the difference between any random Starbucks blend; now I find myself describing flavors of different cups with sentences featuring phrases like “notes of…”! You can stop by their location or have pounds of coffee sent as a gift. Check out their selection – I myself am partial to the Ethiopian (especially the Ardi) but have yet to make a bad purchase.
  3. ARTISAN CHEESE BOXES. Most foodies, local or otherwise, are familiar with Scardello, an Oak Lawn staple featured on The Food Network. But their gift box selections sometimes go overlooked – which makes them a particularly unique gift choice. The small box will get you three ¼-lb pieces of handmade cheese (I myself am a huge fan of their mozzarella, which to me tastes like what might happen if milk were touched by an angel) as well as one accompaniment: antipasti, olive oils, a variety of beverages, and even “charcuterie” – cured meats and prosciutto. A big hit for one and all!

For more information on ORCHARD At The OFFICE, call 972.295.9091.

To learn more about Eiland Coffee Roasters, call 972.991.0100.

If you’d like to know more about Scardello Artisan Cheese, call 214.219.1300.

Chris Buchanan
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Fresh fruit delivery.jpg

For many, the biggest challenge in maintaining a healthy lifestyle comes from changing habits in the workplace. How do you make wellness a top priority when you need to be sedentary at least 40 hours a week?

I’m certainly no miracle of modern fitness myself, but I have the advantage of being married to a personal trainer certified by The Cooper Institute, and I’ve consulted with a lot of my friends who have successfully restructured their lives in order to bring you just a few helpful suggestions on ways you can make progress in your 2016 fitness goals while you’re at the workplace.


While it is very important to spend at least 20 minutes doing cardio or resistance training that will elevate the heart rate, there are little things you can do rather inconspicuously to help muscles, joints, and tendons – and you don’t have to change into gym gear! Here are three of my favorites:

  • Calf Raises: it’s as simple as standing on your toes! It can even be done – albeit carefully  - in stilettos. I try to do twenty in 30 seconds several times a day, especially if I’m going to be in an elevator for a bit. Which brings us to…
  • Taking the Stairs: I know it seems a bit obvious, and at times it’s impractical as it can be tough on the knees for those who are really out of shape, but just taking one flight of stairs is a good start. (And it’s just as important to take steps going down.)
  • Wall Sits: This one’s a bit different. You simply put your back against a sturdy wall, put your feet out in front of you with about six inches of distance between them, then slide your back down until you’re at a 90-degree angle, as if seated in a chair. Hold this position for 30 seconds, although it’s best if you can do 60! You’ll really feel it in your thighs.


Logging what you eat is pretty straightforward, but it’s not an easy habit to get into. I struggled for a long time myself with estimating quantities, knowing how to describe what I was eating, and so on. (I found it particularly tough if I went to the lunch buffet at Afrah, until a friend pointed out the irony of me moaning about the difficulty of counting calories at an all-you-can-eat.) By far the best app is MyFitnessPal, which has loads of users and a database of over 2,000,000 foods which makes maintaining a food diary much easier. It’s something anyone can do, and tracking what you eat and how much goes a long way to illuminating the path to healthier living.


A break room or board room can sometimes seem like a den of iniquity for the well-meaning weight watcher, with sugary, high-sodium snacks lurking everywhere. Sure, you could bring a banana or an apple to work with you, but in the morning rush that’s easily overlooked.

Instead, you might suggest to your Office Manager or the Executive Assistants that they have fresh fruit delivered on a regular basis. The primary company providing this service to the D/FW Metroplex is ORCHARD At The OFFICE, a local company specializing in office fresh fruit delivery. Not only will you have some healthy and tasty fruit to snack on, but your whole office can share the goodness! This one’s really worth looking into, as there are some insurance companies that will reimburse your organization by considering it a wellness expense.

Whatever your fitness goals, don’t forget to have fun, take it one step at a time…and LIVE WELL!