A new CDC study shows nearly a quarter of employed adults get food and drinks at work at least once a week, mostly high in calories, added sugars, and sodium.
With an unpredictable schedule, no one knows that better than Dr. Johnathan Goree.
“And so a lot of times I’ve been forced to eat really salty vending machine food or really greasy late night food”
The CDC says most foods eaten at work do not align well with the dietary guidelines for Americans, leading to more obese workers. Dr. Goree says he was one of them.
“Because sometimes hospitals that I’ve worked at have really unhealthy food and for the past three years I’ve really tried to eat a lot more fruits and vegetables, a lot more lean protein.”
At the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Hospital, dieticians have led an effort to offer healthier options to employees.
“There are a lot of studies out there that show that if we have healthy employees we have more productive hours.”
Dietician Tonya Johnson says offering less fried foods and more plant based meals is not only reducing absenteeism but also healthcare costs.
“Exercise and nutrition are key to healthy employees.”
While not all companies can offer a full service cafeteria, every business can make healthy eating easier.
“If your company does have a vending machine, your company can partner with that vending company so that they can have healthy food items available.”
She adds new technology is making healthy options more readily accessible to companies.
“The ingredients are good for 7 days.”
This refrigerated, free standing salad maker is now available to any size business.
“Like you can pick what items you want.”
Johnson says their health initiative has increased employee morale, energy and gratitude.
“Without good employees that come to work you’re not gonna have a good overall atmosphere at your facility..”
“The best thing that a company can do is really invest in their employees and make sure they have healthy options and the ability to work out and take care of their bodies.”
The salad making machine costs about $25,000 and has a five year lifespan.
Johnson says the sales paid for their machine in only 50 days.