Nutrition Tips for “Eating 9 to 5” – Nutrition Month

Written by admin, March 2, 2015

March 2, 2015 – March is Nutrition Month!

Across the country, Registered Dietitians are inspiring Canadians to eat better at work with this year’s theme: “Eating 9-5”.

Screen Shot 03-02-15 at 08.45 AMWorkday challenges like rushed mornings, no time for a lunch break, food-filled meetings, workplace celebrations and end of day dinner struggles can make it difficult to eat well.

“Many adults spend a large part of their time at work. Finding ways to make better food choices during the workday boosts concentration, productivity and vitality, and leads to better suppertime decisions for themselves and their families,” said Luisa Magalhaes, Registered Dietitian and Public Health Nutritionist at Peterborough Public Health. “Learning quick and easy ways to choose healthier foods every day can have a big impact on health.”

Here are a few tips to help overcome those challenging food times during your workday:

  • Start your day right with a healthy breakfast: Almost 40% of Canadians skip breakfast, resulting in lower productivity, poor food choices throughout the day, and lower intake of important nutrients. Is time tight?  Prep breakfast the night before: make porridge, refrigerate in portions, and reheat with fruit and seeds in the morning; or, have grab’n’go choices ready, such as a whole grain muffins, hard boiled eggs, and yogurt.
  • Navigate food choices at the office: Frequent celebrations, common area treats, food-filled meetings, fast-food lunches and after work cocktails provide easy access to unhealthy food. For meetings and celebrations, consider fresh fruit platters in place of sweets; store healthy snacks like whole grain crackers, dried fruit and nuts in your desk; and opt out of fast-food lunches, swapping them for a packed lunch instead.
  • Bring back the brown bag: Lunch is the most popular meal to eat out–only 37% of Canadians prepare lunch at home. Reinvent leftovers and try some new recipes (get ideas at the websites below), and organize lunch potlucks with co-workers. Stuck with take-out? Add on veggies, go for whole grains, and avoid the deli meats.
  • Beat the midday slump: Afternoon slow-down? Skip the treats, sugary drinks and caffeinated beverages. Get moving: stand up during phone calls, walk to deliver messages instead of emailing, or do some stretches. Grab a small snack (like cottage cheese and fruit or carrots sticks and nut butter), and stay hydrated with water or herbal tea.
  • Avoid Impulsive food decisions on the commute home: Fight end of day fatigue by staying hydrated with water or a decaf tea or latte. Plan ahead: Prepare the week’s menu as a family and have the ingredients on hand. Recruit your family to help with a homemade dinner, assigning meal prep tasks they can do the night before, or when they get home.  Homemade meals, compared to take out, improve diet quality—do it when you can!

For more info on eating better at work:

  • Visit
  • Get free nutrition advice from Registered Dietitians by calling 1-877-510-510-2
  • Download eaTipster free from and get inspired with workplace healthy eating tips for each day in March


For fast and delicious snack and meal ideas and meal planning tips:


Tour your local grocery store with a Registered Dietitian guiding you to the healthiest food choices.  Call 705-742-2733 to register for a Supermarket Tour on Tuesday, March 10, from 7:00 to 8:30 p.m.




For further information, please contact:

Luisa Magalhaes, MHSc, RD

Public Health Nutritionist

(705) 743-1000, ext. 233