Challenge Idea: Nuts for Nutrition

It’s the beginning of the holiday season – and thus the beginning of one of the most challenging months of the year to maintain a heart-healthy diet. Use this challenge to help yourself and your department members stay on track throughout the rest of the year, while still enjoying delectable holiday cuisine.

Since most of our nourishment comes from food, it’s important to understand basic components of nutrition and to realize how easy it is to eat healthy and satisfying meals. To start, provide your department members with the Food Log tracking sheet, information on reading a nutrition label, healthy recipes ideas, and healthy food substitutions.

Challenge Rules:

  1. Determine where you weak spots are. Do you eat more at parties? Do you have a sweet tooth? Think ahead about tempting situations and have a plan for a healthy food substitution.
  2. Each day, record the food and drinks you consume on the Nuts for Nutrition Food Log and think about your successes and/or what you could work on. Strive to have less areas of improvement each week.
  3. The goal of the challenge is to have a healthy-eating day (little or no room for improvement) at least 5 out of 7 days each week. Remember, you can enjoy sweets and other treats in moderation – just make sure and focus on healthier choices the rest of the week.
  4. Remember to stay nuts for nutrition into the New Year!

To motive your department members, try sending out weekly emails with new recipes, motivational messages and quotes, and food substation ideas. Plan a heart-healthy holiday potluck and ask everyone to bring their recipe to share. Put up a bulletin board with reminders and tips in the station. Find more nutrition resources and activity ideas on the Heart-Healthy Firefighter Program web site.

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