CDC warns that you should avoid free snacks such as homemade chocolate chip cookies, a glazed doughnut the size of a dinner plate, or even some bagels. The employees and employers find it challenging to resist theee goodies available in the workplace, especially regarding eatables.

According to a new report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CDC, about 25% of employed adults consume food and drink at their office, averaging an average of 1,277 calories per week.

In another research for food acquisition and purchasing conducted by the national U.S. Department of Agriculture, it was found that free food offered at the office accounted for 71% of all calories assimilated at work.

In this research, the experts analyzed the food and beverages purchased by the employees at work from different vending machines installed or from the cafeterias. It also included food obtained for free in other common areas such as meetings and conferences and at any worksite social event.

In all situations, the food was found to be high in solid fat content and added sugar with meager calories.

Need to promote wellness.

Therefore, when you hire or offer such a service to your employees, ensure that you promote wellness and better health and lifestyle among your workers. It is tough to make one opt for an apple instead of a brownie, and when food is brought by colleagues to the workplace, this is the biggest hindrance to meeting your health and wellness goals.

You will be surprised to know that in an Office Team survey among workers and HR managers, almost fifty percent responded that they are better off and eat healthier when they work from home.

This means something should be done immediately to promote wellness, but the question is what can be done for this purpose. Is it enough to provide a small variety of snacks, water, and soda to the employees during the day, or is there something else to concentrate on?

Experts say that it is more important for employers to focus on the health and productivity of the employees in the end. Employers must focus on the goodwill generated from offering employees these free foods and drinks. They are in the belief that it is even more important than trusting government studies.

It is, therefore, necessary to regulate or provide better insight and advice on employees' behavior toward healthy snacking. It is more critical for an employer to tell their employees what to eat for lunch rather than where to go out.

Therefore, if you are hiring an Office snack service, make sure that you clearly mention that all their vending machines include healthier options, such as nuts, dried fruit, and trail mix, along with a few less-healthful choices, though making healthy choices will ultimately depend on the employees.

Look for wellness initiatives even more so that you support employee health. It is found through the CDC's study that the foods the workers usually get in their workplaces tend to contain high amounts of sodium or refined grains. In all circumstances, these foods are deficient in whole grains and fruit. Therefore, you will need to take a few innovative steps so that you support your employee's health and wellness, such as:
  • Providing onsite personal trainers
  • Giving fitness tracking devices to workers
  • Offering onsite exercise such as meditation, yoga, and even healthy cooking classes and 
  • Establishing a nurse's department in your office. 
Though you cannot monitor the food intake of your employees, you must make sure that you do not fail on your part to offer the healthiest snacking options to support the health and wellness goals of your employees, whether it is through the different vending machines installed or through the designated cafeteria in your office.
  • As for office celebrations and other social events, these can become a real sugary treat. To avoid these from becoming one, you must ensure that you offer health and wellness services through different types of programs such as bike clubs, group fitness activities, and office sports leagues. Other innovative ways include gym membership, standing or treadmill desks, and diet counseling. 
  • You can bring in outside presenters a couple of times every month during lunch hours so your employees can learn much about healthy snacking in the office through different training programs and develop healthy snacking habits. 
  • Ensure you order food and ingredients from the listed and vetted caterers or food service providers that provide only healthier, clean, and fresh food. The types of food to include may be mixed fresh greens, kale, vegetable and fruit salads, antibiotic-free meats, wheat and spinach wraps, seltzer, and water, but no soda.
With all these steps, you can create a great workplace, ensure that the employees are at their best selves, and have better influence and control over the work environment. It is only when you encourage healthy habits that you will be able to make a difference.

Ways to add variety

To ensure that your employees exercise self-control and look beyond the available sugary treats, you must add variety to your office snacks and lunches. You must ensure there are plenty of ideas and that the meal looks different from the same sad sandwich daily. To spice up your office meals:

Get a few fresh snack ideas from good service brands in your area.

You may also mimic the famous foods and high employee demand, only making them healthier when you offer them.

Know the taste and style because it will not do any good to your purpose if you fight against your natural preference and eat something unwillingly.