By Jarrod Agosta - Dietitian and Nutritionist

August is Tradies National Health Month and one of the things we often hear from Tradies in the clinic is that eating on the go is a challenge. Here are my tips to make meal times at work less stressful.

Tip 1 – Plan what you will eat: 

Make a list of meals, snacks and drinks you may need, ideally prior to doing your weekly shopping. 

If it helps you, make a basic weekly guide so you know what you’ll be eating each day. 

Tip 2 – Prepare what you will eat: 

Pre-cook healthy meals and store in airtight containers. Examples of suitable options include:

stir frys 

pasta salads 



bean/lentil salads 

Pre-cooked food should be refrigerated and be eaten within 2-3 days. 

Email if you would like a copy of the template to help you plan your work meals for the week.

Tip 3 – Pack what you will bring: 

Don’t rely on vending machines, petrol stations or fast food restaurants to buy your food. Pack a cooler with your own healthy meals and snacks.  

Keep all foods refrigerated or frozen until you are ready to leave. 

Whilst out on the road, to help you avoid the temptation of buying unhealthy foods bring healthy, non-perishable items such as:

packaged fruit cups 

muesli/nut bars (e.g. Carmen’s Fruit Free, Nice and Natural Protein Nut Bar) 

canned tuna/salmon/beans

Homemade trail mix (nuts, seeds, dried fruit) 

Pack meals and snacks separately in reusable containers and resealable plastic bags to keep things easy. 

In winter, you may also want to purchase a thermos to bring along your own soup/coffee/tea to help keep you warm in the cold weather. 

Tip 4 – Pick when you’ll eat: 

✔ If you can, aim to eat at the same time every day and eat every 3-4 hours where possible

Don’t wait until you’re too hungry to eat. If you can, be sure to include healthy snacks during your shift to keep your energy levels up. Include a mid-morning and late afternoon snack. 

Tip 5 – Make food safety a priority. 

Store perishable food items in a cooler or fridge that keeps food cold (4°C or below).  This includes all meats, fish, poultry, eggs, and anything that has come out of the fridge at the start of the day 

Keep the cooler out of the sun and in the coolest part of your vehicle.

In your cooler bag, use freezer ice packs that can be re-frozen and used again. 

Throw out any perishable and cooked foods left out at room temperature for more than two hours. Food that is spoiled does not always look, smell or taste bad. If in doubt, throw it out! 

Clean coolers that store food often. Coolers can be washed using hot soapy water and left to air dry. 

Keep hand sanitizer gel in the car and use before and after eating. 

Tip 6 – Make healthy choices when eating out. 

On occasion, it may make sense to eat out while on the road. Keep these healthy tips in mind: 

Avoid fatty and fried foods. Many restaurants offer baked options, low-fat, or low-sodium alternatives. Look for foods that are steamed, baked, broiled, grilled, stir-fried, or roasted. 

Avoid supersizing and food combos. These meals might look like a good deal but are higher in calories and often low in nutrients. 

Keep it small. Divide large restaurant servings into two or more smaller servings. The leftovers can be safely stored in a cooler for lunch the next day.

Say “yes” to more fibre. Choose whole grain/wholemeal carbohydrate options (bread, rolls, rice, pasta, tortillas, pizza crusts) where available. 

When offered a side to your main meal, ask for more cooked vegetables or a salad instead of chips/fries. 

Avoid sugary drinks. Stay hydrated by keeping a large reusable water bottle filled in your transport or cooler bag. 

Choose whole fruit over fruit juices more often. 

Watch the caffeine. Limit your intake of coffee, energy drinks and soft drinks.


If you are stuck for meal ideas, want to improve your diet and energy levels or need any other assistance with your diet and nutritional needs, scroll down to book an appointment and start feeling better today!

Book your appointment