One of the highest impact tools we can use to help drive corporate wellness is quality whole food eating habits. The problem is many wellness administrators feel they have little or no influence on the food choices of workmates. They know they need to help the workforce improve long-term eating habits but they don’t feel like they can reach into their lives with enough impact to make a difference. Consequently many don’t try, they just leave food out of their wellness equation.
Don’t fall into this rut. Work CAN be a highly powerful instrument for wellness in regards to food. To prove the point and get your creative juices flowing, below is a list of 7 ways to influence healthy food choices at work.
Ideas for promoting healthy food choices:
- Provide healthy food and drink alternatives at work sponsored meals and events. Take the time to find venders and understand options. Solicit ideas from the population and report back what you heard. Surface problems and solutions with others. Groups who know one another work best but you can share unique ideas across groups.
- Sponsor whole food cooking demonstrations onsite as possible or at a local location.
- Sponsor a health food store visit with a local Health Coach or whole food expert. Expand choices and options for people. Read labels, answer questions, and discuss alternatives…
- Partner with a community garden or even build a garden onsite if possible. Get people’s hands dirty, share the food, and have them report back their experiences.
- Create a forum by which people can share recipes. You could turn them into a company cookbook. Tools like www.plantoeat.com can be used to easily input recipes from online and share them. Everyone on Facebook? Try a private Facebook page. Link recipes with effective methods of delivery and logistics. Highlight dinner recipes easily used as leftovers for lunch. Gather crockpot recipes that can be started at bedtime to use next day for breakfast or lunch. Others can be started in the morning to eat for dinner or as leftovers for lunch the following day. Showcase both the food and the methods.
- Provide a comfortable onsite place people can eat food from home if possible. Be explicit that brown-bag lunches are always welcome when and where food is being eaten.
- Find ways to continually educate and expose your audience to the healing power of whole food eating. Most of the health facts we hear come from a source trying to sell us something or that has some other motive besides wellness. It is important to present the anti-junk food message in an ongoing way. We all need to hear it.
I’ll bet you can think of many more activities. If you’re short ideas send and invitation to the workforce for more. Include an articles like this one to get people thinking.
You want to make all your efforts go better? Remember 2 principles: (1) Get people involved as a community creating and implementing solutions together. (2) Get direct participation and support from your highest executive leader and his or her leadership team. Without that you will have trouble with more than just influencing food habits.
Get moving and plant some seeds for change today. They will grow into more than you imagined tomorrow…!
Best of health and potential,