If you know me, you know I’m all about promoting healthier, safer, and more inclusive food service habits for everyone. That’s why I love National Public Health Week (@NPHW), a movement that celebrates prevention, advocates for healthy and fair policies, and champions the role of a strong public health system to become the healthiest nation by 2030 (the U.S. is currently ranked LAST).
Public health is important because when we’re all healthier, we save money and we’re happier, too. Plus, with all the meetings we hold annually, we actually have an important role in helping the country reach this goal. Here are a few ways to support public health at your job and at home:
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- Make dishes with less oil. Forks Over Knives says that chefs can substitute for oil in some dishes by adding 1-2 tablespoons of water or broth as needed, accounting for improvement in the taste of the dish. This will make your dishes healthier and will make your meeting attendees feel lighter and more refreshed than they otherwise would have been.
- Include more fruit in your dessert dishes. There are people who will go for chocolate in any form before they go for anything else, no matter what options are on the table. Consider covering fruit in chocolate as a dessert option or serving fruit in a number of different ways (whole, sliced, cooked, etc…) to attract more people to more naturally sweet and healthier dessert options.
- To keep attendees feeling light, rather than uncomfortable and bloated after a meal, consider serving lighter options (spaghetti squash for pasta as an example) that leave guests feeling powered up and able to take on the day.
- A beverage bar of flavored waters instead of sugary fruit juices and sodas can be a great option. Water flavored with cucumber, lime, lemon, watermelon, and strawberry is a classy drink that looks great and revitalizes and refreshes the body.
Being healthy can be difficult, and I think we all struggle with one thing or another when it comes to making our bodies as strong and as healthy as they can be. Creating a healthier public is something all of us will have to commit to, and with any or all of these four steps, we can all make a difference and contribute to the cause. Happy Public Health Week!