Why WFH is bad for you: The daily commute is good for your mind and your waistline, scientists say 

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Why WFH is bad for you: The daily commute is good for your mind and your waistline, scientists say

  • University College London study suggests commuting helps work-life balance
  • Some 45 per cent of 3,000 people surveyed felt more productive in the office 
  • Meanwhile 50 per cent admitted to snacking more while working from home










Commuting to work can have a positive impact on your mental health and help you keep off the pounds, new research has revealed. 

A study by neuroscientists at University College London (UCL) has suggested travelling to the office compartmentalises work and home life. 

Almost half of the 3,000 people surveyed by the study said being in an office put them in a better mindset for work.  

Joseph Devlin, professor of brain sciences at UCL, told the Times: ‘The commute delineates boundaries between home and work life and can be used to switch one off and transition to the other, which can have a positive impact on cognitive performance, wellbeing and productivity.

‘Just going to work generates more diverse experiences than working from home, especially through interactions with other people.’

Some 45 per cent of people in the study said they felt more productive in the office as they could share ideas with colleagues without having to schedule a call. 

Almost half of the 3,000 people surveyed by the study said being in an office put them in a better mindset for work (file photo of commuters in London) 

It comes after a study indicated that towns and villages across the UK could see a major financial boost thanks to the growth of hybrid working because of the pandemic (file photo)

It comes after a study indicated that towns and villages across the UK could see a major financial boost thanks to the growth of hybrid working because of the pandemic (file photo) 

Meanwhile 50 per cent admitted to snacking more while working from home and 43 per cent said they were more distracted – with household chores, deliveries and longer lunches being the biggest culprits.   

Admiring the scenery by train was branded the ‘best part’ of heading into the office for 55 per cent of respondents – while a quarter said it was the chance for some ‘me time’, including reading a book, listening to a podcast or catching up on emails. 

It comes after a study indicated that towns and villages across the UK could see a major financial boost thanks to the growth of hybrid working because of the pandemic.

Research by the International Work Place Group (IWG) and design company Arup found rural and suburban economies ‘could generate up to an extra £327 million a year’ due to the forecasted expansion of flexible office and co-working spaces to meet the growing demand for hybrid work.

Towns that have experienced major increases in demand for office space include Bromsgrove (153 per cent), Marlow (66 per cent) and Evesham (58 per cent), according to the research. 

The study also estimated that more than 4,000 new jobs can be created to support office workers who look to cut down on commuting and work from locations closer to where they live.

IWG said its research suggested that almost 50% of all office workers would ‘quit their job’ if they were asked to go back to their office on a permanent five-day basis.

IWG predicts that the change will see dramatic changes to commuting times – which is currently on average around 58 minutes in the UK.

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