Why Promote Nutrition?
One way to address the economic challenge of rising health care costs is to encourage and help employees get well and stay well. One of the best ways to do this is to promote healthy food choices and proper nutrition in the workplace. Healthy and balanced nutrition is important for weight management, but it also plays a critical role in preventing diseases such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes and cancer.
How to Promote Nutrition in the Workplace
- Make Meetings and Celebrations Healthy Events: Instead of pizza for work events or donuts for meetings, offer healthy food choices such as fresh fruit, yogurt parfaits, veggie trays, humus with wheat crackers or pretzels, string cheese, or nuts. You could also order in a salad bar or sandwiches made with whole-grain bread/tortillas and lean deli meats. If the event is catered, request the healthy, low calorie menu options. Last but not least, offer plain water or fruit infused water, unsweeted tea, or coffee (light on sugar and cream offerings) instead of sugary drinks.
- Control portion sizes: When large plates are offered, people are more likely to fill them up and over eat. Instead, offer smaller plates at events. This will help reduce waste and encourage smaller portion sizes.
- Healthy Eating Contests: By organizing healthy recipe contests among employees, you are encouraging them to participate, get excited about eating healthy, and learn about new recipes. Have your workplace VIPs judge the results or post all recipes online and have employees vote. The winning recipe can be published in your company newsletter or you can offer a gift card to the winner.
- Healthy Cooking Demonstrations: You can host healthy cooking demonstrations at work, or go through a company. Our Health Designs team did this last year. We had an amazing time participating in a healthy cooking demonstration through Publix Aprons Cooking School! Not only did we learn new recipes, but we also discovered how to use various cooking oils and spices to make healthy meals even more delicious.
- Replace vending machines and candy bowls: Employees will eat what is easily accessible, especially during busy days. So, make healthy food choices, such as fresh fruit or nuts, available in the break room and around the office.
For more ideas on promotion nutrition in the workplace, click here!