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King County employees are encouraged to use these nutrition and physical activity guidelines for use in their own workplaces. We encourage employees to make healthy food choices at work as part of our commitment to health.

These guidelines are intended to assist employees in making healthy food and beverage choices for all meetings, trainings, and events. For healthy suggestions, download these shopping lists for Costco, Safeway and Trader Joe's:


Serve appropriate portion and serving sizes that reflect the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans 

  • Select foods and beverages that are culturally appropriate

  • Choose foods that are low in fat, especially saturated and trans fats

  • Provide entrees that are low in fat

  • Provide whole grain products

  • Provide fresh fruits and vegetables, and salads

  • Provide vegetarian options

  • Offer locally or Washington grown products, when available

  • Offer organic products, when available

  • Serve nonfat or 1% milk, 100% fruit or vegetable juice, water or unsweetened iced tea instead of soft drinks and other sugar-sweetened beverages

  • Provide pitchers of water at meetings (not bottled water)

  • Avoid foods with added salt and added sugar

  • Include space on registration forms to indicate food allergies or dietary restrictions

  • Use recyclable, disposable products when proper dishwashing facilities are not available

  • Follow safe food handling practices (For example, wash hands for 20 seconds with soap and warm water, keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold).

  • Provide Nutrition Facts Labels whenever possible

Use the following checklist to ensure that your meeting promotes good health for all participants:

  • Does the menu for your meeting include a variety of food choices?
  • Does your meeting include some form of physical activity?
  • Did you include both fruits and vegetables with each meal and snack?
  • Are whole-grain breads, cereals, rice, and pasta incorporated into meals?
  • Are there options for participants with special dietary needs, such as vegetarian, lactose-intolerant, or gluten-free diets?
  • Did you request low calorie and low or reduced fat items where possible?
  • Did you specify that dressings, sauces, and condiments should be served on the side?
  • Did you request that mini versions of items like muffins, bagels, cookies, and brownies be served or that the items be cut into smaller portion sizes?
  • Will you provide water in bottles or pitchers at breaks and meals?
  • Will you offer a selection of low-calorie beverages, if serving drinks other than water? These could include unsweetened tea with lemon and diet soft drinks.
  • Yogurt

  • Fresh fruit

  • Low-fat breakfast burrito

  • Yogurt - low or non-fat

  • Hard cooked eggs

  • Whole wheat or multi-grain mini bagels (or cut regular bagels in half)

  • Small muffins (2-1/2" or smaller) - bran, oatmeal, or multi-grain (large muffins can be cut into smaller portion sizes)

  • Fruit quick breads (i.e., oatmeal, banana, pumpkin) - cut into small pieces

  • Whole grain toast or English muffins

  • Offer low-fat (LF) cheese, LF cream cheese, peanut butter, jam or jelly

  • Granola bars - low fat (5 grams of fat or less/bar)

  • bananaLow-fat granola

  • 100% fruit or vegetable juice (4 - 6 ounce portions)

  • Water -- plain, sparkling or flavored with no added sugar

  • Coffee, tea (offer decaf) - served with nonfat or 1% milk

  • Taco Salad with low-fat or fat-free dressing on the side

  • Soups - vegetarian broth based or skim milk based (not cream)

  • Pasta salad with low-fat dressing

  • Sandwiches made with whole grain breads or wraps made with lean meats, low-fat cheese & low-fat condiments

  • 2-3 ounce serving - lean meats, poultry, fish, tofu (3 grams fat/oz)

  • Steamed vegetables with herbs/lemon

  • Whole grain rolls

  • Fresh fruit, canned fruit in fruit juice or light syrup

  • Include at least one vegetable - fresh or cooked (avoid cream sauces)

  • Baked potatoes with low fat toppings (low-fat sour cream, low-fat plain yogurt, or salsa)

  • When serving desserts, offer small serving sizes. Consider: angel food cake (2" square) with fresh fruit topping, low-fat ice cream or frozen yogurt.

  • Boxed lunches/dinners - whole grain or pita bread or wraps prepared with low-fat mayonnaise; meats, poultry or marinated tofu 
    (low-fat = 3 g fat/oz); low-fat cheese, request fruit or veggies instead of chips; or if including chips request pretzels or baked chips (7 g fat or less/oz).

  • Water -- plain, sparkling or flavored with no added sugar

  • Coffee, tea (offer decaf) - served with nonfat or 1% milk

Most food service professionals are familiar with healthier food preparation options and are willing to accommodate requests for changes to their usual fare.

  • Fresh fruit - cut up and offered with low-fat yogurt dip

  • Raw vegetables salads marinated in fat-free or low-fat Italian dressing

  • Vegetable sushi rolls

  • Low fat cheese slices or small cubes

  • Reduced or low-fat whole grain crackers

  • Lean beef or turkey - 1 ounce slices

  • Miniature meatballs made with lean meat

  • Mushroom caps with low-fat cheese stuffing

  • Miniature pizzas made with English muffins, tomato sauce, mozzarella cheese, and mushrooms Roasted nuts  

Consider whether it is necessary to provide food at meetings, presentations, and seminars, especially mid-morning and mid-afternoon. 

  • Carrots

  • Fresh fruit

  • Raw vegetables - if providing, choose non-fat, low-fat dips or salsa

  • Pretzels, hot pretzels cut in pieces or baked chips (7 grams of fat or less/ounce)

  • 100% fruit or vegetable juice, avoid soft drinks

  • Low fat cheese, string cheese

  • Granola bars - low fat (5 grams of fat or less/bar)

  • "Lite" popcorn (lightly salted)

  • Whole grain crackers

  • Dried fruit or trail mix

  • Roasted nuts

  • Water -- plain, sparkling or flavored with no added sugar

  • Coffee, tea (offer decaf) - served with nonfat or 1% milk

  •  Try to choose a meeting location where participants can easily and safely take a walk. 

  • Provide participants with maps of the area showing good walking routes.

  • Organize an early morning physical activity opportunity for overnight conferences. Offer either a walk or low-impact fitness activity.

  • To encourage physical activity throughout the meeting tell participants that the dress code is casual.

  • Encourage participants to take the stairs. Place signs near the elevators telling people where the stairs are.

  • Include physical activity on the meeting agenda so participants can plan appropriately (rain coat, umbrella, walking shoes, etc).

  • Encourage networking by suggesting that groups take a walk together and talk about their common goals.

  • Schedule brief activity / stretch breaks in the AM and PM led by a group member.

  • If the meeting/conference is in a hotel, give hours and location of gym.