With businesses starting to reopen and employees once again returning to the workplace, our health needs to be at the forefront of our minds. Measures to limit the possibility of coming into contact are most important, however we cannot neglect our nutritional behaviours either.
Healthy eating and nutritional programs play an integral role in promoting employee health and wellness. 91% of people treat themselves to multiple snacks throughout the day, and they account for 50% of our food consumption. Whether working from home or in the office, healthy snacking is important. \
There is utility behind grabbing a quick bite to eat. It provides an opportunity to get important macronutrients into our system that larger meals may neglect, and a quick snack often tides us over, getting us through that final meeting before our lunch break. However, eating unhealthy foods without moderation can be catastrophic for our health.
Many employees want to be healthier eaters. Some don’t know where to start or how to form the habit, while others lack the proper incentives. In this blog we’ll provide you with the tools to help your employees become healthier snackers.
Snacking Behaviour Differs By Time of Day
A recent study by Mintel revealed that time of day has a strong impact on what people turn to for a snack. Snackers appear to be interested in starting the day on a positive note, turning to foods that are healthy (29%), light (23%) and energizing (23%), while in the evening, sweet (30%), comforting (25%) and indulgent (22%) snacks are more prevalent.
The Mintel study also reveals(source 2) that the top reason consumers snack is to treat themselves (50%) while 28% agree that taste is more important than health when choosing a snack. Snacking for self-care continues to be a popular motivator as 37% said they snack to give themselves a break during the day while 24% snack to relieve stress.
Nothing has a greater impact on your body and mind than the foods you consume. It contributes to important workplace characteristics like mental focus, energy levels and overall mood.
Changes snacking behaviour can be obtained through micro-eating moments and healthier on-the-go food food choices. Substituting a better alternative is not only easy to do, but you're also likely to reap positive health results and work performance.
Easy Access Determines What Employees Eat
A huge factor in promoting healthy snacking to provide employees with easy access to nutritious foods. How easily an employee can get their hands on certain types of food often shapes their eating habits.
As an employer, you need to ask yourself whether you’re creating an environment that encourages healthy eating. This means reducing sweet, sugary, and salty foods stored around the house, or in the office, while providing the opportunity for healthy options.
Examples Of Healthy Snacks
To give you an idea of healthy options to purchase your workplace’s pantry and fridge, here are some examples of healthy snacks that you can encourage employees to eat:
One cup of plain nonfat/low fat greek yogurt with a cup of fresh fruit
Almond butter and banana open sandwich
One ounce of walnuts, almonds, or cashews
Whole-grain bread with a couple of thin slices of turkey with tomato
A granola bar
One cup of vegetarian, lentil, or black bean soup.
A cup of overnight oats with fruit
Carrot sticks with hummus dip
Salmon avocado toast
Just be careful not to introduce foods into the workplace if any of your team suffer from serious food allergies
It is important to educate staff on nutrition so that they can recognize how to be a healthier workplace snackers and why it is important to do so. Take the time to go grocery shopping and stock your workplace with good choices. To help employees working from home, run a recipe challenge or have staff post photos of their snack shelf. Get into the habit of staying on top of maintaining healthy snack stock for your workforce. Clean out the workplace or home cupboards and refrigerator to eliminate the less healthy options. Make the conscious decision to promote snacking healthily and watch the positive changes happen.
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