Eat well ideas
Healthy eating habits in the workplace can have a big impact. What we eat and drink is important for maintaining healthy weight, blood pressure and cholesterol and for preventing type 2 diabetes.
Diet can affect work performance too. Without regular well-balanced meals or enough water, employees may suffer from headaches, feel sluggish or have difficulty concentrating.
Start your workplace healthy eating programme by supplying good information. We have a fantastic range of healthy eating resources including Top tips for putting healthy eating into practice in the workplace.
Healthy choices, easy choices
Small changes to your workplace environment can make a big difference to peoples' eating habits:
- keep vending machines stocked with healthier choices or supply a subsidised communal fruit bowl
- provide clean and well-maintained areas for employees to prepare and store their own meals
- provide fruit instead of biscuits at meetings,
- encourage caterers to develop a healthy workplace catering policy or guidelines, if they haven’t already
- set up a simple breakfast bar to encourage staff to start the day healthily
- ensure easy access to fresh drinking water
- display and promote healthy choices in the staff restaurant, and provide nutritional information, to help people make better-informed choices at lunchtime.
I was never a fruit eater, until work introduced it to us. I’ve now got a taste for it and I’m beginning to buy fruit everyday and I feel a lot healthier on it.
Bath and North East Somerset Council
Contact local weight management clubs to see if they can run on-site sessions at lunchtime or after work. Our information sheet Measuring a healthy weight will help people assess what’s a healthy weight for them, and you could run your own Waist Watchers Challenge.
When trying to lose weight, peer support and regular weight or waist measurements can be good motivators to keep going.
Grow your own
If you have space within your workplace grounds, why not allocate a patch of ground for an allotment or a few raised beds? Growing your own fruit, vegetables or herbs helps to spark interest in healthy eating, and adds to people’s enjoyment of getting their ‘five a day’. Gardening is also a good form of exercise.
You will need a champion to take overall responsibility for planning and organisation, and other employees to volunteer to help with the gardening. Share the fruit or vegetables amongst the volunteers and wider workforce.
Our healthy diet questionaire can help employees to determine how healthy their current diet is and see what changes are recommended. This is a particularly good self-assessment tool for anyone that doesn’t want to discuss their diet or health with colleagues.
It may also be useful for employees to have access to a set of weighing scales, located discreetly.