Good nutrition starts at home, and at uni

Snack food advertising aimed at children continues to normalise packaged food, at the expense of fruit and vegetables. Photo: Dan Gold / unsplash.com

National Nutrition Week is rolling in at Flinders with the start of a new initiative to bring healthy eating to the main campus.

The College of Nursing and Health Sciences is leading the implementation of the Heart Foundation Workplace Catering Guidelines.

“The Heart Foundation Workplace catering guidelines are a perfect example of practising what we preach in the University,” says Heart Foundation Future Leader Fellow Professor Robyn Clark, from the College of Nursing and Health Sciences.

“At meetings workshops or seminars we will be serving healthier food as an important part of promoting health and wellbeing among our staff and students.

“By making sure that healthy choices are available at all functions and in onsite cafeterias, you make it easier for your staff to make better food choices.”

The Heart Foundation healthy eating and drinking information also encourages staff and students to make better food choices at home.

“Developing a workplace healthy catering policy can help to drive culture change,” Professor Clark says.

“It’s also the best way to ensure long-term commitment to healthier food and drink choices in the workplace.”

A multidisciplinary group comprising nurses, nutritionists, physiotherapists, exercise physiologists and researchers from the College of Nursing and Health Sciences are developing programs to develop a campus environment including auditing the standards of nutrition in the food serviced on campus and campus wide activity competitions to motivate college teams and individuals to take time away from the computer screen.

Stephanie Daughtry and Hannah Rohrlach prepare for a food event.

To promote the message that Australians should increase their vegetable consumption to the recommended five serves per day, Flinders University Nutrition and Dietetics students are partnering with Adelaide City Council to present a series of activities and free food giveaways from 14 to 20 October, to coincide with National Nutrition Week.

The Flinders team, led by Community Nutrition Engagement Office Hannah Rohrlach, will use the events to illustrate that making small changes to how and what you eat can result in big gains for your health and wellbeing.

In addition to presenting a Nutrition Resources and Information Display in Adelaide City Library (Rundle Place, 77-91 Rundle Mall, Adelaide) throughout the week, there will also be a series of free events around the city, including:

‘Super Taster’ Tests and Cooking Demonstrations at Adelaide City Library on 15 and 17 October, 10.30am–1.30pm. In addition to enjoying free tastes of delicious foods, attendees will hear speakers identify some surprising nutrition myth busting, and have the opportunity to take a quick genetic test and find out if you are a ‘super taster’.

‘Fruit Freebies’ and nutrition resources are being distributed at City of Adelaide Community Centres and Libraries between 15–19 October.

Adelaide Aquatic Centre’s new ‘Healthy Menu’ will be launched with some vouchers being given away between 4pm and 7pm on 16 October, and 9am and noon on 20 October. Nutrition students from Flinders will be holding interactive sugar testing and myth busting activities alongside other giveaways during these times.

Meanwhile, ‘Cook Off: Uber Eats vs Home Cooking’ will be a fun cooking demonstration in the Adelaide Central Market from 11.30am to 1.30pm on 18 October. It will emphasise that cooking at home is a sure way to ensure a healthy diet, while also saving time and money – so see how easy it is to prepare Aussie-style burgers and seasonal pasta.

Other events at the Adelaide City Library include ‘Google Yourself Healthy’ from 10.15am–11.15am and ‘Are You What You Eat?’ 6pm-7pm, both on 19 October. Book for these events at cityofadelaide.com.au/nutrition

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College of Nursing and Health Sciences Nutrition and dietetics Students

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