Presentation Ideas: Nutrition Month

Viva Las Veggies – By Elovia Peddle, RD: Nutrition Services is taking the theme “Viva Las Veggies” and doing activities throughout the month with the theme, “Don’t Gamble with Your Health, Eat Right!” They are having a farmers market at the end of the month featuring fresh veggies for sale. They are doing a veggie walk, using information from quizzes in earlier CFFH Newsletter issues (see June 2000 and June 2001) for their clues. Associates will walk throughout the health center figuring out veggies based on the posted clue, e.g. “Once known as the love apple, I am a great source of lycopene.” Their monthly Brown Bag Discussion will be on Vegetarian Diets. They are doing a Poker Walk, using cards from the Washington Dairy Council. They will give out tokens that can be redeemed for a free beverage (maybe V-8 juice?), and the winning hand wins that dollar amount. They are featuring veggies in the cafeteria throughout the month – veggie wraps, top your own baked potato, a variety of vegetable soups, a deluxe salad bar, etc. The bulletin board for the month will also have a casino theme and center on eating more veggies.

MyPlate Walk – Adapted from Karen A. Jircitano, RD, LDN: Karen selected a healthful, shelf-stable snack from each food group in MyPlate. She made blank MyPlate forms with the food groups labeled and inserted the name of an employee who agreed to hand out the snack for that group. Employees took a break, strolled around the building to collect their snacks, and got their food groups initialed.

Guess the Calories in the Cafeteria Contest – By Karen Buch RD, LDN: Here are directions for a very clever contest that can be conducted in most cafeterias. 1. Build 3 trays of completely different food and beverage selections. 2. Make one example with healthful choices, one example that makes less-healthful choices and one that is a “mystery tray” made of typical choices. 3. Make labels on toothpicks sticking out of the foods on the first 2 example plates with calorie and fat content. 4. Tally the total calorie and fat grams and write them on a paper table tent in front of the first and second trays. 5. Offer slips of paper for contest entrants to guess the total calories for the mystery tray on their entry forms. Award a prize to the person who comes closest. (NOTE: Discard any perishable foods used for the display. Place a sign that states food is “for display purposes only.”)

Pedometer Contest – By Judy Simon, MS, RD, CD: Set up a competition between departments to track their calories burned using pedometers. Have the company provide them free of charge along with incentives such as T-shirts or water bottles.

Portion Contest – By Susan Jaffe, RD, CD: A dietetic intern at Susan’s Head Start Program just did a workshop on portion sizes for employees. She gave each individual a plastic sandwich bag and asked them to pour out what they thought was a serving of Cheerios. The winner(s) received a nutrition-related prize.

Fast Meal Contest – By Mindy Ellsworth, RD: Have a contest for favorite recipes that can be prepared in 30 minutes or less. It may also include those that can be made ahead of time for fast preparation. The recipe must meet the guidelines as set out in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The dietitian should be available to help staff modify recipes as needed. Hold a potluck in the cafeteria where staff can sample recipes and vote for their favorites. Winners are awarded prizes and copies of all recipes are given out to everyone.

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