work lunch

Nutrition Month – Eating Well at Work

This year for Nutrition Month, it’s time to think about eating right at your workplace!

By: Kelly Atyeo, B.A.Sc., M.H.Sc., P.H.Ec.

The Dietitians of Canada’s theme is called “Eating 9 to 5!”1…But of course this extends to people who work night shifts or early mornings…nutrition is always a priority at work.

The “Morning” Rush

About 40% of Canadians don’t eat breakfast2…probably because the start of the day always seems to be the most hectic!  You may have dogs to walk, kids to get ready for school, or presentations to finalize. However – eating a healthy breakfast can help you manage your weight, improve your appetite, and make you more alert at work.2

Grab & Go Ideas for Busy Mornings 

  • Yogurt parfait with berries & granola
    • The evening before, add frozen berries and yogurt to a container. Top with granola and let chill overnight. If you prefer it crispy, add the granola in the morning when you grab it from the fridge.  
  • Super Quick Smoothies
    • Blend together yogurt, milk and frozen berries. Make in batches the day before and refrigerate to drink on busy mornings. 
  • Grab & Go Breakfast Burrito
    • This recipe provides you with a healthy balance of protein and carbohydrates to kick start your day. If you find there’s no time to cook an egg, add hummus to the wrap instead!   

Mid-morning Rumble & Mid-afternoon Munchies 

You’ve made it past the morning rush and 10:30 am rolls around. What’s that sound? It’s the mid-morning rumble of your stomach!  

Rather than racing for the vending machine, prepare in advance by having healthy snacks available at your office.

High fibre and low-glycemic index foods are great snack options. These will help keep you full until lunch and won’t spike your blood sugar too high, which could make you feel tired – and less productive! 

Healthy Snack Options3:

  • High-fibre, low-sugar granola bar  
  • Handful of almonds
  • Whole-grain crackers
  • Cut up veggies 
  • Hummus

You can also save some snacks for the mid-afternoon munchies if think you may be hungry towards the end of the day. Remember, every day may not be the same!

Cafeteria Default 

Your workplace can be a supportive environment for your healthy diet – or it can test your willpower. No matter what the case may be, there are ways to take control of your meals at work.

Make your Healthy Lunch!

One of the simplest and most effective ways to make sure you’re eating healthy at work is to make your own lunch. It might take a bit more time, but your coworkers will likely want to trade theirs for yours!  

Below are a few simple chicken dinner recipes that can be made in batches so the leftovers can be taken for lunch the next day:

Support your Coworkers

Foster a healthy eating environment at work. If you’re having a work event/celebration, suggest that healthy options be on offer too (vegetable/fruit platters, whole grain wraps, etc.). You can even host a work potluck and encourage healthy simple recipes to be shared with the team!

The following recipes would be great options to make for a potluck to get everyone thinking about nutrition at work:

Workplace Community  

Your workplace is one of your communities – and a part of your life that has direct effects on your overall health and well-being. Make nutrition and health a part of your workplace culture so you can continue to work well from 9-5 pm!1

References: 

    1. Dietitians of Canada. (2015). Nutrition Month – March 2015. Retrieved February 27, 2015, from www.dietitians.ca/Your-Health/Nutrition-Month/Nutrition-Month-2015.aspx
    2. Dietitians of Canada. (2015). Eating 9-5!. Retrieved February 27, 2015, from www.dietitians.ca/Downloadable-Content/Public/Fact_Sheet_1_NM_2015_ENG_BW.aspx
    3. Dietitians of Canada. (2015). Eating 9-5!. Retrieved February 27, 2015, from www.dietitians.ca/Downloadable-Content/Public/Fact_Sheet_4_NM_2015_ENG_BW.aspx
    4. Dietitians of Canada. (2015). Eating 9-5!. Retrieved February 27, 2015, from www.dietitians.ca/Downloadable-Content/Public/Fact_Sheet_2_NM_2015_ENG_BW.aspx

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