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FROM THE RESOURCE LIBRARY

Eat Right with Healthy Bites

A healthy workplace environment is supportive of employee’s efforts to be healthy. Healthy eating is an important part of an overall healthy lifestyle. Today more faculty and staff are requesting healthy foods provided in the workplace or sold at work. In order to support healthy food options, the Vanderbilt Food Advisory Committee has focused on three primary areas: Healthy Eating, Healthy Catering, and Healthy Vending Options.

Health Plus has created this resource page to support you and your department in making healthy food choices for yourself or for your co-workers.

Healthy Eating

Components of a Healthy Meal:

  • Build a healthy breakfast – Whole grain + Lean meat/protein + Whole or cut fruit + Low-fat dairy
  • Build a healthy lunch or dinner – Whole grain starch + Lean protein entrée or Vegetarian entrée + Salad
    OR
    Grilled/roasted/raw vegetables + Whole or cut fruit + Low-calorie beverage

Choose appropriate portions by following the MyPlate guidelines:

  • Make one-half of your plate fruits and vegetables
  • Make one-fourth of your plate grain
  • Make one-fourth of your plate lean meat or other protein
  • Include low-fat dairy such as milk, cheese or yogurt
  • Offer foods that are lower in fat and salt such as baked chips, unsalted popcorn, grilled or roasted entrées, or dishes seasoned with herbs and spices instead of added salt.

For Breakfast:

Choose This: Instead of:
Bottled water, 100% juice, Skim or 1% milk, tea, coffee Soda, fruit-flavored drinks, whole milk, gourmet coffee drinks
Low-fat yogurt Full-fat yogurt
Small bagels (3 ½ inches or smaller), small muffins (2 ½ inches or smaller) Large bagels, regular or large muffins, doughnuts, pastries
Unsweetened cereal (ex: Cheerios) Sweetened cereal (ex: Lucky Charms, Fruit Loops)
Whole grain waffles or French toast Waffles or French toast made from white bread
Canadian bacon, lean ham, turkey sausage Bacon, pork sausage

For Lunch and Dinner:

Choose This: Instead of:
Diet sodas, unsweetened tea, water, 100% juice Regular soda, fruit-flavored juice drinks, sweet tea
Salads with dressing on the side Salads with added dressing
Vinaigrette dressings Creamy salad dressings (ex: Caesar, ranch)
Soups made with vegetable puree or skim milk Creamy soups made from whole milk or half and half
Pasta salads with low-fat and/or vinaigrette dressings Pasta salads with mayonnaise or cream-based dressings
Sandwiches on whole wheat bread Sandwiches on white bread or croissants
Lean lunch meats, poultry, fish Fried meats, bacon, full-fat cold cuts
Grilled meats Fried meats
Dips made from salsa, low-fat cottage cheese, hummus or low-fat salad dressing Dips made from mayonnaise, sour cream, cream cheese, or cheese sauce
Baked chips, pretzels Regular chips
Vegetable spring rolls (not fried) Fried egg rolls

Healthy Catering

A workplace nutrition program encourages healthy eating for all by emphasizing and offering:

  • Fruits and vegetables
  • Whole grains
  • Low fat dairy
  • Lean meats, poultry, fish and legumes
  • Low amounts of salt, sugar and saturated fat

Below are some resources to help choose healthier selections on the Vanderbilt campus and nearby:

Healthy Vending

  • Look for these items:
    • Fat-free or reduced fat popcorn
    • Whole-wheat crackers with peanut butter or cheese
    • Whole-grain granola or cereal bars
    • Graham or animal crackers
    • 100% fruit or vegetable juice
    • Fresh fruit
    • Dried fruit such as raisins, cranberries or apricots – Microwavable soup or oatmeal
      Source: Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
      Read Initiative Aims to Boost Healthy Vending Options in The Vanderbilt Reporter

Additional Resources:

Nutrition Clinic – Learn more about the comprehensive nutrition counseling center staffed by registered dietitians

Listen to the Healthy Bites on the Vanderbilt Campus Wellcast

Listen to the Heart Smart Fast Food Choices Wellcast

Read the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans for key healthy eating recommendations​

Sources: Nashvitality: A Toolkit for Creating a Healthier Workplace

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Choosing Foods and Beverages for Healthy Meetings, Conferences and Events.

University of Minnesota School of Public Health. Guidelines for Offering Healthy Foods at Meetings, Seminars and Events.

United States Department of Agriculture. Choose MyPlate.


Posted on Friday, March 1, 2013 in Health Plus, Living Healthy, Feeling Good, Resource Articles and tagged

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7 Comments on “Eat Right with Healthy Bites”

Healthy Bites for Healthy Lives the way to go

Manik Paul on July 17th, 2013 at 4:01 pm

I love having the option of the healthy plate lunch and water daily in the cafe.

Carol Keopf on June 9th, 2014 at 4:17 pm

I drink water or 100% juice instead of soda
I eat healthy meal everyday.

Manik Paul on July 30th, 2014 at 10:58 am

I drink water 90% of the time and 10% of the time 100% juice.

Debra Parman on September 25th, 2014 at 9:31 am

Water with meals

maddenjj on October 15th, 2014 at 11:14 am

I do not drink sodas. I stopped this a year or more ago. Now, I have water.

yvonne cartwright on October 22nd, 2014 at 1:28 pm

Healthy bites instead of reg.snacks

Safiya on October 30th, 2014 at 9:47 pm

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