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Tools for Healthy Eating at Work

Healthy Food Choices at Meetings and Events

Healthy Eating Guidelines

When planning meetings, workshops or other events where food and drinks will be served, try to make the healthiest choices you can. Here are some guidelines to help you plan a healthy menu for a meeting or event, whether you're bringing the food or having it catered.

The guidelines are based on the key messages provided in Canada's Food Guide to Healthy Eating:

  • Healthy Food ChoicesEnjoy a variety of foods from each food group every day.
  • Choose low-fat foods when you can.
  • Choose whole grain and enriched products more often.
  • Try to choose dark green and orange vegetables and orange fruits.
  • Choose low-fat milk products when you can.
  • Choose lean meat, poultry and fish, as well as dried peas, beans and lentils more often.

For information on serving sizes, please refer to Canada's Food Guide to Healthy Eating.

Suggestions for Catering

  • For meals, try to include foods and/or beverages from at least three of the four food groups.
  • For snacks, include at least two of the four food groups.
  • Talk to the caterer about your wishes and be specific. Take a look at some menu suggestions.
  • Let the caterer know that you prefer Ontario products.
  • Ask the caterer if you can make last minute adjustments in the quantities ordered if people cancel at the last minute.

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Special Diet Considerations

When you provide a variety of foods from the four food groups and follow the guidelines outlined above, you will almost always meet the dietary needs of the participants.

Healthy Food ChoicesOf course it's important to remember that some people attending your event may have special dietary requirements that should be taken into consideration.

Alternative foods can be arranged for those with special needs such as:

  • Lactose intolerance
  • Celiac disease
  • Food allergies
  • Vegetarianism
  • Religious restrictions
  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Cancer

To help meet these specific needs, give the event participants the opportunity to inform you of any dietary requirements they have and ask that they provide specifics about the foods they can or can't eat.

Need some new Menu Suggestions?

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Healthy Food Choices at Meetings and Events

Revised: February 13, 2012

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