Food and Beverages At Workplace are Not Healthy Options

Granola contains healthy ingredients such as oats nuts and dried fruit and it can serve as a tasty topping to yogurt or cereal. But since it can pack up to 600 calories per cup, it's important to sprinkl

Granola contains healthy ingredients such as oats nuts and dried fruit and it can serve as a tasty topping to yogurt or cereal. But since it can pack up to 600 calories per cup, it's important to sprinkl

The foods were seldom a healthy salad or included a side of veggies -- they tended to be processed, high in salt and included "empty" calories, things like pizza, soft drinks, cookies, brownies, cakes, pies and candy.

The preliminary findings, which have not yet undergone the peer-review process, will be presented by Onufrak at Nutrition 2018, the annual meeting of the American Society for Nutrition.

The new study used data from the US Department of Agriculture Food Acquisition and Purchasing Survey (FoodAPS), a nationally representative household survey on food purchases and acquisitions during a seven-day study period. It tend to contain high amount of sodium and refined grains, calories and very little whole grains and fruit, leading to unhealthy eating putting you at risk of various disease including cancer, researchers warn.

In the week that was studied, "nearly one in four working adults obtained food at work. and the food and beverages that they got added up to an average of almost 1,300 calories, more than half the recommended daily calorie intake for the average adult", lead author Stephen Onufrak, a CDC epidemiologist in the Division of Nutrition, Physical Activity and Obesity, told ABC News.

The researchers found that the most common source behind this fat gain was free food which many people ate at work in the study.

CDC researchers would also like to see calories and nutritional contents listed on vending machine and cafeteria items to give employees pause. These items may have been purchased from vending machines and cafeterias or were provided for free in common areas, meetings, work events, etc.

"Our results suggest that the foods people get from work do not align well with the recommendations in the dietary guidelines", said Stephen Onufrak to IndiaTv.

Nearly a quarter of the study participants obtained food from work at least once a week, the results revealed.

How much are they getting?

To change employees' habits, Onufrak suggests not only offering healthier foods, but also "promote them, make them attractive, delicious, priced competitively with less healthy foods, highlight them on menus, and put them in a prominent place".

As most of the food the employees received at work was free, the employers may now have to consider encouraging healthy food options at social events and meetings, said Onufrak.

Onufrak also recommended worksite wellness programs which have been effective at cultivating health-conscious behavior among employees, reducing employee absenteeism and health care costs. Employers could also ensure that foods in cafeterias or vending machines follow food service guidelines, thus making it a better option for their employees.

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