If you need some inspiration or ideas for an action plan, think about the feasibility and impact of the military nutrition environment’s key areas. The infographic below shows areas of potential influence captured by the mNEAT.
Food policy, food availability, and behavioral design are all important aspects to consider when developing an effective action plan. Try the following strategies to improve the nutrition environment where your local military community lives, works, trains, and plays.
Is there a policy or guidance to promote, encourage, identify, or educate diners on more nutritious options?
- Develop a policy to supply and promote nutritious foods and drinks for community spaces such as the worksite.
- Work with leadership to create a healthy food “philosophy,” encouraging the availability of more nutritious choices at work-related meetings, events, fundraisers, and gatherings.
- Refer to your service’s nutrition, food, and health policies to see what support is available to enhance your installation’s MNE.
Are more nutritious foods and drinks available?
Is there a variety of nutritious foods and drinks available?
- Offer more fresh fruits and vegetables.
- Increase the amount of low-calorie and low-sugar drinks such as fruit-, vegetable-, or herb-infused water, sparkling water, and unsweetened coffees and teas.
- Add a nutrient-dense, plant-based entrée to the menu.
- Offer whole grains as alternatives to items made with refined (white) grains or flour.
- Create a grab ‘n go section of tasty, nutritious options for customers on the go.
- Increase the availability of high-performance food choices at food trucks, micro markets, kiosks, worksite snack bars, and other non-traditional venues.
Are more nutritious foods and drinks easy to find?
Is nutrition information or messaging available at the venue?
- Place healthier options at or above eye level in coolers and on shelves.
- Strategically place signage to promote nutritious offerings.
- Highlight high-performance choices at the point of selection with menu boards, printed menus, signs, or labels.
- Display nutritional information, facts, or labels so diners can make informed choices.
- Place healthier (“Green” in the Go for Green® program) menu items first in line or front and center to encourage diners to choose those nutritious options first.
- Price “better for you” choices similarly to less healthy options and offer discounts when possible.
- Advertise a nutrient-dense “meal or snack of the day” on a prominently placed sign.
Have you had success with any of the above strategies? Do you have other ideas to share with the community? Let the CHAMP MNE team know at firstname.lastname@example.org.