Most employees spend roughly a third of their day at work, and they likely participate in some on-the-job snacking. As an employer, you can influence your staff’s choices by providing more nutritious fare, in vending machines, break rooms or at catered events.
Here are some ways to make healthy options accessible:
- Use pricing to drive the purchase of healthier items.
Lower the price of healthier food and/or increase the price of less healthy options. One study found that the sale of healthier items increased as much as 42 percent during an 18-month period when prices dropped 31 percent.
- Promote foods with fewer calories and greater nutritional value.
Place healthiest choices at eye level. Use color-coding to note a food's nutritional value. For instance, green may indicate a healthy option, while red may represent few nutritional benefits. Yellow may mean a middle-of-the-road option.
- Implement a campaign that educates and engages employees.
Let employees know what you're doing and why. Be patient and don't get discouraged if they aren't as receptive as you would like.
Assess the snacking situation at work
Conduct a nutritional assessment of your eating program. Afterwards, review the areas without programs in place and decide which ones to prioritize. To get started, look at this sample snacking assessment.
Creating a culture of wellness in the workplace takes time, effort and resources. Small steps, such as introducing more nutritious foods, can have a big effect on engaging employees to take charge of their health. Promoting smarter snacking can contribute to increased productivity, better employee morale and a greater sense of well-being.