Workplaces are a fruitful environment to support workers' eating habits, since adults spend almost half of their waking hours at work. Regular eating and nutritious meals help to promote well-being at work and beyond. Supporting employee health and well-being with workplace health promotion programs focusing on dietary changes and healthy eating including personal and educational components, environmental components and multi-component strategies have been proven to be effective.
Recruiting new workforce in the more rural areas of Finland, such as Satakunta, has been found to be problematic. Coincidently there is not enough graduating young workforce, elder workers are retiring, and increasing numbers of health problems are affecting the share of Finnish working age population. To optimize the use of the existing workforce health promotion interventions focusing on nutrition have been suggested to better the health and well-being of the current working age Finns in Satakunta and beyond.
The RAVI project includes a randomized, controlled trial (RCT) exploring the effectiveness of nutritional guidance on work ability, work productivity, sickness absence, work well-being, health-related quality of life and nutrition. Participants are working-aged (≥ 18 years) employees (n=170) in six different companies located in Satakunta.
The twelve-month intervention for the intervention group (IG) includes:
- Tailored nutritional guidance 3-4 times
- Personal nutritional plan
- Opportunity to participate “Work well-being with nutrition” - online training
- Eat@Work- mobile application to follow own eating
- Smartwatch to follow own physical activity and sleep
- A comprehensive information package about own health
The control group (CG) maintain their own usual diet without guidance, but after final measurements they get one nutritional guidance meeting and an opportunity to participate “Work well-being with nutrition” - online training.
The RAVI trial aims to study the current state of work ability (performance), work well-being, work productivity, sickness absence, health-related quality of life, nutrient intake and food habits among working-aged (≥ 18 years) employees at Satakunta region and investigate the effectiveness of a 12-month nutritional guidance on work ability (performance), work well-being, work productivity, sickness absence and health-related quality of life, nutrient intake and food habits. Additionally, the RAVI trial measures and analyses the sleep, activity, recovery, and work vitality of the study volunteers from the intervention group (IG).
Trial is described and registered at Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry.
The study is funded by the European regional development fund (ERDF) and Satakunta University of Applied Sciences.
Long term goals for RAVI-project
Our project will provide nationally important data on how workplace nutrition guidance affects quality of life, work performance, sickness absence, eating behavior and dietary intake among working aged Finns. Based on the knowledge gained from RAVI-trial and previous success story Eat@Work-project, the aim is to continue enhancing the well-being and work ability with nutrition guidance and improving work-time nutrition of the Finnish workforce.
This is done nationally by
- The encouraged cooperation between employers and nutrition experts.
- Low-threshold nutrition guidance tools and materials provided by the projects.
- Continuous national research work focusing on work-time nutrition and improving the nutrition of the working age Finns.
The RAVI-project is led by Senior Researcher, PhD Susanna Kunvik, who has broad knowledge on nutrition interventions and nutrition guidance. MSc Meri Mustakallio works as the study nutritionist giving nutritional guidance to participants. Other experts working in the project found here.