Work Vending Machines. {Healthy or Not Healthy}

by Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife on September 20, 2012

in Food

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Today we are going to talk about vending machines. This is what our work “kitchen/break area” looks like. Pretty plain. Nothing special. We do have 4 vending machines. {one for coffee, food, drinks, soda}
Now I want to talk about how health these machines are. Lets start with food shall we:
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I did some research to try and find how many calories some of these have:
Doritos Cool Ranch: 260 Calories {1 bag}
Sour Cream and Onion Herrs Chips: 160 Calories. {1 serving}
Lays Classic Potato Chips: 160 Calories {1 serving}
Snyders Pretzels: 120 {1 serving}
Combos: 240 Calories {1 bag}
Snickers Bar: 266 Calories {1 bar}
Twizzlers: 240 Calories {1 bag}
Snackwell’s Creme Sandwich Cookies: 210 {1 package}
Tasty Cake Chocolate Cupcakes: 210 {2 cupcakes}

I’m still trying to figure out what the healthy option is in the machine. Any ideas? Maybe the pretzels? or the popcorn? maybe? This machine has this mark on it:
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Balanced Choices… I’m not sure if I would call a snack that was 250 calories Balanced. Lets see what else they stand for: less than 35% total fat, 0 trans fat {thats actually good} Sodium less than 350 mg.
Do you see that Candy and Nuts and seeds are exempted!?

Well anyways what I’m getting at is this vending machine stands for a balanced lifestyle but they don’t really have anything healthy in it! I mean how is a candy bar in a machine any good?! Ridic.

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Our break area also has two soda machines. {if one wasn’t enough} The one on the left also has orange and apple juice, teas, energy drinks and milks. I guess I could get behind the milk being good for you and the water but the juices are probably like 20% real juice. The sodas are probably 2 servings in one. Energy drinks… I know everyone gets tired but I’m not sure that is the healthiest option either. The machine on the left also carries some food. Mostly its burgers or pizzas that you put in the microwave. Again also not healthy. The other day though I did see a yogurt in there.. FOR THE FIRST TIME! It was like a miracle. Finally one healthy option in the group!

I don’t know maybe I expect too much out of vending machines and I guess not everyone is trying to live a healthy lifestyle. They probably buy a lot out of them. I’m not going to lie and say that I never buy anything out of it because I do. The other day I bought a Doritos Cool Ranch bag. I brought a sandwich and needed something else to go with it. I decided there weren’t too many healthy options inside so I went with what I was craving and Doritos it was. I don’t buy foods out of it all the time though. There is some talk about some new vending machines coming. Hopefully there are more lunch and healthier options!

Questions: Do you have vending machines at work? Are any of the products healthy? Do you use the vending machines?

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{ 46 comments… read them below or add one }

Alison @ racingtales September 20, 2012 at 8:31 am

Ugh, vending machines are the worst! Fortunately I work at home so no temptations here. At our rec center there are motivational signs everywhere saying things like, “This is where Mary lost 20 lbs. Way to GO!” but on the vending machine the sign says “This is where Jon gained 35 lbs. Way to Go!” Always makes me laugh.

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 20, 2012 at 8:37 am

hahaha that is so weird!

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jessie September 20, 2012 at 8:44 am

Absolutely love this post. Before moving out here to Kuwait, our vending machines @ work were almost identical to yours. I think it’s so sad how you it’s impossible to find a healthy snack in them. I mean yeah pretzels aren’t bad.. but seriously, there are so many other healthier alternatives that can realize the ridiculous amount of chips & candy bars in them too.

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 20, 2012 at 11:44 am

i agree girl! i agree!

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Heather September 20, 2012 at 8:44 am

I work for a small company so we don’t have vending machines. In fact, I can’t remember the last time I even bought anything out of a vending machine!!
Good post!

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 20, 2012 at 11:43 am

well that is great! Sometimes the vending machines come in handy like when I’m so tired and need some coffee but I can’t leave the station… but the coffee is the only one I use sometimes meaning aka once ever 3 months.

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Jenna September 20, 2012 at 9:03 am

Man oh man!! It sure is terrible what a convenient death trap those things can be!! You’re very right to expect more from it tho.. I mean they give junky options for those who don’t care about their health, it seems unfair not to give healthy options for those that do!! Spa love!

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 20, 2012 at 11:42 am

true story! (:

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Jennifer September 20, 2012 at 9:25 am

Love this post! Did you personally have to order one of everything from the machine to “test” it? ;)

I’m on a no-junk thing this month, but honestly the only thing I’ve ever gotten out of our machine was Oreos.. I think the only “healthy” options would be the mixed nuts.. and they do have Sunchips, which at least have some fiber in them lol.

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 20, 2012 at 11:41 am

hahaha. I did not buy one of everything. I looked most of them up online this morning for a ball park range. All of which aren’t good! haha. Sometimes we need some oreos! (:

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Jennifer September 20, 2012 at 9:32 am

Also.. do you have a way to enable notifications when people comment? I’d like to keep up with the comments, but don’t see an option!

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 20, 2012 at 11:42 am

do you mean my comments? I think when someone that usually posts comments on my blog it accepts it right away but like if they haven’t before I have to accept it.

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Jennifer September 20, 2012 at 12:09 pm

Like when I comment on your blog, I won’t know that you commented back unless I come back to your page to check.. I know on my wordpress site, there is an option to have someone check a box if they want to be notified of followup comments.

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 20, 2012 at 1:13 pm

hmm ill have to look into that! thanks!

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Heather @ Kiss My Broccoli September 21, 2012 at 9:52 pm

Just happened to notice this as I was scrolling through the comments. I just downloaded the comment reply notification plugin for wordpress a few months ago and LOVE it! It’s really simple to download and get started…just make sure you go into your settings after downloading and enable it (I kinda maybe didn’t catch that minor detail at first and wondered forever what was wrong with my blog! Haha…ugh!)

Heather @ Kiss My Broccoli September 21, 2012 at 9:52 pm
Abby @ BackAtSquareZero September 21, 2012 at 10:32 pm

Just did this to my own blog and helped a friend with it. Was scrolling down to leave my comment and saw.
If you have questions email me at backatsquarezero at gmail

I wish vending machines had better choices. Sometimes when I am late to night class, from work, I wish I could grab a quick healthier snack. Maybe dries fruit, granola bars, or at least baked chips.

Michele September 20, 2012 at 10:18 am

Awesome post! The thing I can’t wrap my head around is how one of the biggest issues surrounding businesses & employers these days are the rapidly rising cost of health insurance but they don’t make the connection to the fact that they have all this junk food and people sit on their bums 8-10 hours a day. They are basically making the situation worse.

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 20, 2012 at 11:40 am

I KNOW RIGHT! I so wish I could bring in a medicine ball to sit on! I hate just sitting at my computer!

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Lisa September 20, 2012 at 11:30 am

Thankfully the vending machines in my office are in the basement and I never have an excuse to go down there. Unfortunately, my office has a candy ROOM and that is harder to avoid.

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 20, 2012 at 11:40 am

a lot of people bring in desserts all the time in our newsroom! that makes it tough to avoid too!

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Debbie Brown September 20, 2012 at 6:56 pm

We have doughnuts every birthday which is just about every day. Bad stuff.

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Kat September 20, 2012 at 11:48 am

I always get pretzels from the vending machine, because they are the least processed and artificial out of the bunch. My work doesnt have vending machines though, so I just bring in my own snacks!

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Mindy @Road Runner Girl September 20, 2012 at 12:45 pm

Vending machines are awful! I try to just go right on by because they are way too tempting for me. Luckily….I hardly ever have cash or change on me so even if I wanted to give in to the temptation I couldn’t!

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Lauren September 20, 2012 at 1:08 pm

NAG has some of our products on E-town’s campus vending machines. A great healthy option with snack size granolas. :)

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 20, 2012 at 1:13 pm

man I gotta get that in our vending machine! they’d make a fortune off of me! (:

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Debbie Brown September 20, 2012 at 6:53 pm

We definitely need healthier foods in work place vening machines. They have fruit, dried by welches’ that’s it. Guess I’ll keep packing my own. It’s cheaper too.

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 21, 2012 at 7:28 am

we have that in rotation too sometimes… I’m not a big fan though. I love packing my own but its those days that you have to stay longer or just didn’t bring enough that get ya.

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Karina September 20, 2012 at 7:31 pm

Oh, vending machines can be evil when one is really hungry! But they are ok for the occasional snack :) Like Doritos!
xo

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 21, 2012 at 7:27 am

haha thats right! (: thanks!

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Erica @ For the Sake of Cake September 20, 2012 at 8:17 pm

Since I work at a high school and all of the “unhealthy” stuff has been forced out, I believe there is only one vending machine and it just sells water!

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 21, 2012 at 7:27 am

well at least you got some water in there! (:

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Suzi @ Confessions of a Fitness Instructor September 20, 2012 at 9:48 pm

The vending machines at the University Athletics Complex I teach fitness classes for are AWFUL. If I forget my water or something half the time the water is sold out so I have to buy juice or gatorade. And the food is even worse. I’ve seen (on the internet) photos of vending machines full of fruit, yogurt, etc. Why can’t everyone have those??

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 21, 2012 at 7:26 am

omg I know right! I would be heaven if we had healthy options and realllll lunch options not just snacks to snack on all day!

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Tera Norberg September 20, 2012 at 9:54 pm

That is a temptation I don’t miss at all!! I’m so glad that every client I have allows me to work out of my house and the office I do go to has a coffee machine and that’s it! Great post!! SPA!

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Becki (@Fight4Wellness) September 20, 2012 at 10:08 pm

Great post! I’ve struggled with this a bit on days when I end up feeling more hungry than the snacks I’ve packed for work/school. The vending machines on campus luckily have nutrigrain bars, mixed nuts, and a couple of other healthier options that I’m blanking on now. Still not the best choices, but certainly better than pop tarts.

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 21, 2012 at 7:26 am

Sometimes in the rotation in our vending machine there are peanuts… salted though… which makes it less healthy haha.

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Steph September 20, 2012 at 11:29 pm

The vending machines at my work are HORRIBLE. There’s not a single healthy option. I always throw snacks in my work bag to make sure I don’t succumb to the junk food!

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 21, 2012 at 7:25 am

ugh.. isn’t it crazy? Why can’t they have just 1 healthy option in there!

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Glenneth September 21, 2012 at 6:50 am

we don’t have any vending machines at work. i bring all my snacks and drinks from home.

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 21, 2012 at 7:25 am

that is great!

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Melanie @ Nutritious Eats September 21, 2012 at 10:20 am

Oh don’t get me started. ;) I have tried to get them changed to healthier items in past jobs with only minimal success. I did work at one place over 6 years ago that actually had a healthy vending machine and it was fabulous. I’ve never seen anything like it since.

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Lynda Weed September 21, 2012 at 7:47 pm

I’m gonna send you a pick of our vending machine. It’s legit a healthy one… only have 100 calorie shit in it. soo obviously you know I hate it.

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 22, 2012 at 7:39 pm

hahahahah! I would love that!(:

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Heather @ Kiss My Broccoli September 21, 2012 at 9:47 pm

Ugh, of all places where there SHOULD be healthy vending machine options, at the hospital where I work, the pickings are pretty much the same! I rarely EVER purchase anything from them (or even step foot in our sorry excuse for a cafeteria) but I did get desperate once and bought a bag of pretzels…but it was like 400mg of sodium for one measly serving! That’s ridiculous!

I really wish they would offer healthier options like Popchips, nuts without all the preservatives/sugar/salt, or some clean protein/snack bars. I think if they OFFERED healthier snacks, most people would at least consider choosing them over the other junk!

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Danielle @ Itsaharleyyylife September 22, 2012 at 7:39 pm

THANK YOU!

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