By Melissa Lafrance on July 4, 2018
Summer is here! What better way to enjoy the nice weather and nature than with an al fresco outing. To kick-off summer this July, we are exploring picnic ideas and tricks, as well as delicious recipes for a nourishing and fun outdoor meal, whether it’s in a park, at the beach, or a building rooftop. Read on to learn more.
Week 1: Pack with Ease
- Opt for reusable over disposable. Check out BC Living’s picnic packing list for ideas on what to bring.
- Mason jars or repurposed glass jars are perfect for carrying liquids or anything that could potentially leak. Check out these 26 portioned meals in a jar by Greatist.
Week 2: Seriously Sizzling
- Looking for vegetarian options? Explore BBC Good Food’s collection of vegetarian picnic recipes.
- If you need recipe ideas for your next summer BBQ cookout or picnic, check out this collection of summer BBQ picnic foods made healthier.
- If you are grilling burgers and/or sausages (meat or veg), spice ‘em up with Pampered Chef’s ultimate list of toppings and Kitchn’s how to quick pickle any vegetable (no canning required).
Week 3: Snack Attack and H2O Hydration
- Build your own healthy trail mix with this recipe from The Healthy Maven.
- Don’t forget to bring water in a reusable water bottle or try a cool summer beverage idea by making your own no-sugar-added iced tea (Eating Well) or jazzing up your water with fruits, vegetables and herbs thanks to these flavoured water recipes (Food Network).
Week 4: Sandwiches and Sweet Stuff
- Need inspiration to create a delicious sandwich? Check out Tablespoon’s grilled vegetable on focaccia recipe and caprese picnic sandwiches.
- Think outside the bread and try these deconstructed sandwiches on a stick (Food Network).
- Watermelon: there’s nothing better on a hot summer day. Here are five ways to cut it according to WikiHow.
- Try making summer melon slushies (Woman’s Day) and berry trifle in a jar (All Recipes).
Looking for more ideas?
Each week in July, we will be sharing tips, tricks and recipes to help you a picnic with a punch! Become a UBC Health Contact to receive weekly reminders.
By Melissa Lafrance on October 3, 2017
Food is one of the most basic needs for our survival and health, but it also involves sharing, celebrating and demonstrating our care for others, and supporting our rituals and traditions. Food and social interactions often go hand in hand.
Have you ever noticed your food intake being influenced by particular social activities or connections with certain groups or individuals? Social settings can highly influence our behaviours, including food choices. While social gatherings often promote occasional indulgences, they can also involve consuming healthier options.
Check out the following tips:
- Huffington Post’s 10 Tips for Eating Healthy at Parties
- Dietitians of Canada’s Healthy Eating at Meetings, Events and at Work
Most of us live in communities, and making healthy choices can be tied to relationships with the people that surround us. Social support from friends and family in the form of encouragement, accountability, establishing connections, and modeling or sharing healthy behaviours can influence choices . Having social connections that foster supportive acceptance and participation are helpful in making us feel included and respected. Eating meals together, both at work or at home, can help increase social interactions and nurture relationships. Learn more with the following resources:
- Center for Nutrition Studies’ tips for inclusivity and respect around food choices and behaviours
- Reward Gateway’s top reasons to eat together at work
Studies show a strong relationship between a workplace’s physical and social environment and employee health behaviours. A lot of our waking hours are spent at work, which can involve meetings and social gatherings.
Consider these tips and recipes while at work:
- Dietitians of Canada’s Healthy Eating at Meetings, Events and at Work
Try these recipes for bringing your own lunch to work:
- Cookspiration’s Roasted Broccoli Mushroom Mozza Frittata
- Jamie Oliver’s Cracking Chicken Burrito
- Damn Delicious’ Easy Burrito Bowls
- Eating Well’s Mediterranean Wrap
What should you bring to a potluck? Try these re-imagined classic dishes you can serve at a potluck or social event:
- Our June potluck edition of Healthy Recipes & Tips
- Cookspiration’s Layered Mexican Dip
- Cookspiration’s Lightened up Guacamole and Chips
- Cookspiration’s Zucchini Lentil Fritters with Dill Sour Cream
- Cookspiration’s Oven-Baked Sweet Potato Fries with Curry Mayo
Melissa Lafrance’s Tip of the Month
This month, set a goal to take part in at least one of the following:
- Engage in at least one social event (i.e. do the 30-Day Online Mindfulness Challenge with a buddy or organize an office potluck)
- Eat lunch with a friend or group of colleagues at least once per week
- Go for a walk at lunch with someone in your network at least twice this month
Become a UBC Health Contact
Each week in October, we will be sharing tips, tricks and information to support social health. To receive weekly reminders or for more information on how you can promote health and wellbeing at UBC, sign up to be a UBC Health Contact.
By Miranda Massie on October 6, 2015
The gathering offered staff a rare opportunity to take a break and network with their work neighbours as well as learn more about the services offered in their building through information booths. Several departments hosted booths including Access & Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Office, Enrolment Services Professionals, Centre for Student Involvement & Careers, Counselling Services, and the building’s Health and Safety Committee. Representatives from the United Way Campaign and Human Resources Thrive week campaign were also on hand to promote their campaigns to staff.
Lisa Castle, Vice President, Human Resources shared a few words of support for the Brock Hall staff at the start of the event. “Being on the frontlines can be challenging and you are all so important to creating a respectful and welcoming environment for students (and for each other).” Castle acknowledged the demands on Brock Hall staff saying “there are many health and wellbeing initiatives offered throughout the year, and I encourage you to commit to your wellbeing as much as you take care of students.”
Joining Lisa Castle was Janet Teasdale, Managing Director, Student Development and Services who mentioned the $2.5 million investment in student mental health and wellbeing to be made by the university over the next year, including additional staff to Counselling Services.
Sara-Jane Finlay, AVP Equity and Inclusion, and Janet Mee, Director of Access and Diversity hosted the event and spoke briefly about the new mandates of their offices.
Janet Mee announced that as part of the new mental health and wellbeing funding Access & Diversity has added two more Accessibility Advisors to their staff. “If you have a student with a disability and are unsure of how to support them ask them who their advisor is in Access and Diversity and contact us, we are happy to assist.”
For news from the Equity and Inclusion office Sara-Jane Finlay outlined that her office recently adopted some student programming from Access & Diversity, including the Equity Ambassadors peer program. “I am excited about this opportunity to work with students and to bring equity, diversity and inclusion into orientation and student leadership.”
A big congratulations to Access & Diversity and the Equity and Inclusion Office for demonstrating what a Thriving Campus is all about!
For more information about this event, click here.
By Colin Hearne on October 1, 2014
Connecting with others is a great way for us to stay social, and stay healthy! By nature, we are social beings. Most of us are fine with being on our own at times, but we also enjoy talking to others, sharing our experiences, and just being around other people. This sociability can keep us healthy, both physically and mentally.
There are plenty of reasons why being around others keeps us healthy. The support of others can help us maintain a greater sense of self-esteem and reduced stress. Being social may hold one of the keys to living a longer life. In a study published in the August 1999 issue of the British Medical Journal, 2,761 participants 65 years of age and older were followed for 13 years. Researchers tracked participation in 14 activities, including swimming and brisk walking, to shopping, volunteering, and playing cards with friends. The results suggested that people who spent time taking part in social activities fared just as well in terms of longevity, as those who spent the same amount to time exercising.
Letting UBC Support You
One great way to feel supported and to interact with others is to utilise Healthy UBC programming available UBC to staff and faculty. The Healthy Workplace Initiatives Program (HWIP) is a fund available to UBC departments, units and operational committees to support healthy activities for faculty and staff in the workplace.
The program provides start-up funds for kick-starting health related, sustainable initiatives. Have a great idea but need some seed money to get it off the ground? Already running programming but want to take it to the next level? Apply for Healthy Workplace funding! Some recent recipients include
- Museum of Anthropology’s Organic vegetable garden
- Centre for Hip Health and Mobility’s Hip to be Fit Program
- Sauder Business and Careers Centre’s Physical activity and Nutrition program
(The next application deadline is Nov. 21, 2014 at 4:30pm – Click here for a full list of past and present recipients.)
Information Session: Applying for the UBC Healthy Workplace Initiatives Program (HWIP): Oct. 7, 2014 @ 12.15-1.15pm
Have a great healthy workplace idea, but need some seed money to get it off the ground? Already running healthy workplace programming but want to take it to the next level? This interactive, practical workshop will be one hour dedicated to helping you understand HWIP and directing you to the path of possible funding. For more information, or to register, click here.