If you’re looking for a creative way to connect with your co-workers, a lunch club might be just what you’re looking for. The concept is simple—a group of colleagues who meet on a regular basis (once a week, month, etc.) and eat a homemade meal together. Plus, it’s a smart way to save money and stay healthy. Brown-bagging it with your colleagues can help save you nearly $3,000 every year, and avoid about 200 extra calories per meal, compared to restaurant fare.
On top of that, eating with your co-workers could even result in better team performance. In fact, one study found that firefighters who prepared and ate their meals together at the firehouse were significantly more likely to have higher group performance than those who didn’t eat together.
Typically, lunch club members are assigned a day where they serve as the host, preparing lunch for the rest of the group. Even Fitbit employees participate in a handful of small-group lunch clubs at company headquarters! Check out this how-to guide, so you can join in on the healthy fun.
4 Easy Steps to Start a Lunch Club
1. Send an email inviting colleagues to join your lunch club.
2. Once people are on board, assign each participant a certain day that they’re in charge of the food. (You can even use a scheduling tool, like Doodle, so people can choose the day or days that work best for them.)
3. Book a meeting room for every lunch club session, or plan to eat in the dining hall or other communal area.
4. Send a calendar invitation for each lunch club session, so people don’t forget!
5 Ways to Be an Extra-Awesome Lunch Club Host
1. Select a healthy dish that’s easy to make the night before, good for a group, and will keep until the next day. A few tasty ideas: One-Pan Chicken & Swoodles, Kung Pao Cauliflower, or Rainbow Salad with Spicy Peanut Dressing.
2. Factor in dietary restrictions when making your meal. For example, if there are some vegetarians in the group, serve the meat on the side.
3. Store your meal in a container with a sturdy lid, that’s lightweight and easy to transport.
4. Don’t forget to grab paper plates and silverware from the office kitchen (or bring some from home).
5. When lunch is over, share your recipe with other club members. Participants will appreciate knowing how your meal came together and might even try it on their own. Plus, it will give them healthy eating inspiration for when it’s their turn to host.
And if you’re a guest, don’t forget to arrive on time and help clean up when the meal is over!
Looking to step it up? Learn how Fitbit Group Health can help your company develop a successful wellness program, boost employee health and happiness, and improve the bottom line.
This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for medical diagnosis or treatment. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or condition. Always check with your doctor before changing your diet, altering your sleep habits, taking supplements, or starting a new fitness routine.