From education to employment

New statistics reveal over two fifths of people working in education have ditched the diet after eating chocolate on the job

The British Heart Foundation discovers how the daily grind is driving us chocolate crazy for its DECHOX fundraiser this March

New statistics released as part of the British Heart Foundation’s (BHF) DECHOX campaign show the true extent of “cake culture” in the office, as over two fifths of people working in education (42%) who are trying to watch their waistlines say they’ve ditched the diet at least once after being tempted by sweet treats in the workplace. (1)

The nation’s heart charity is encouraging everyone to give up chocolate and get sponsored for the month of March to help raise money for life saving heart research.

The survey showed nearly half (47%) of the education sector eat chocolate at least every other day during the average working week, with around a third (31%) saying they are actually incapable of getting through the nine-to-five without succumbing to their chocolate cravings.

The sector ranks joint first place of the most chocoholic industries to work in, alongside the IT and Telecoms sector.

Over half (55%) of workers in education confessed that chocolate is so commonplace in their office it has become part of the furnishings. This rose to two thirds (66%) of people in finance and over six in ten (61%) in the healthcare industry who admit there’s permanently chocolate in the office.  Over a third (35%) of all workers in the industry believe their colleagues are to blame for this chocolate epidemic sweeping offices across the nation. Over a third blamed tiredness (35%) as the main reason for eating chocolate on the job.

That said, it seems nothing can stand in our way when in the office. Although over eight in ten (87%) believe it is an unwritten rule not to steal chocolate from colleagues, over a fifth (21%) have pinched from other employees to get their sugary fix.

With over half in the industry (55%) confessing they will scoff chocolate at work if it’s within eyesight, the BHF says it’s time for a DECHOX. The charity is calling on chocolate-loving companies across the UK to give up their favourite chocolate treats for March and get sponsored to raise money for life saving research into heart disease. Sign up at

Tracy Parker, Heart Health Dietician at the BHF, said: “It’s no secret that we’re a nation of chocoholics. While its fine to treat yourself now and again, this survey shows just how much our workplace “cake culture” is helping feed our sugary habit, even tempting people to ditch their healthy diets. 

“By challenging yourself and your colleagues to a DECHOX this March you can help eliminate temptation whilst raising funds for our life saving research. By ditching chocolate, you can kick start some healthier habits, and help fund the breakthroughs that will see us beat heart disease for good.”

Each year, around 160,000 lives are cut short by heart and circulatory disease – that’s one every three minutes.

In 2016, over 18,000 DECHOXERS took part, raising an incredible £860,000 for the BHF’s research. Join thousands by saying no to chocolate this March! Find out more and sign up at, follow us on Facebook or meet fellow Dechoxers using #DECHOX

About British Heart Foundation

For over 50 years we’ve pioneered research that’s transformed the lives of people living with heart and circulatory conditions. Our work has been central to the discoveries of vital treatments that are changing the fight against heart disease. But so many people still need our help. From babies born with life-threatening heart problems to the many Mums, Dads and Grandparents who survive a heart attack and endure the daily battles of heart failure. Join our fight for every heartbeat in the UK. Every pound raised, minute of your time and donation to our shops will help make a difference to people’s lives.

1.       All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from Censuswide. Total sample size was 2,000 UK adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 4th January 2017 and 11th January 2017.  The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all UK adults.

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