How do we feed our mind as well as our appetite at work? Through ACCESS Programs, employees can now learn how to supercharge their day with the help of Jan Macfarlane, a Clinical Nutritionist.


Clinical nutritionist Jan Macfarlane is giving employees food for thought to boost their mood and productivity at work.

Through ACCESS Programs, workers can now tap into Jan’s expertise and learn how to supercharge their day through diet and other healthy lifestyle choices.

“Employees spend a large chunk of their days working, but if their mental and physical health are suffering, so will their productivity,” says Jan (pictured).

“A happy gut leads to a happy mind.”

With research establishing a clear connection between mental and physical health, Jan says it’s time for businesses to take a more holistic approach towards their staff.

“Offering nutritional consultations is a perfect way to get your employees on the right track to better health.

“In addition, provide educational nutritional resources, and inspiration to keep staff motivated.”

The inclusion of a nutritionist builds on traditional employee assistance offered by ACCESS Programs, such as counselling, mediation, trauma response and crisis management.

Manager Ben Wells: “While it’s most important for an employer to provide a safe and healthy workplace, it’s also important to encourage healthy lifestyles among their employees and their families.

“At ACCESS Programs, we have identified that the opportunity to get good and professional advice about our diet is difficult.

“We know that diet significantly impacts our mental health and our ability to work and that workplaces need support in addressing this because it needs to be more than a bowl of fruit in the lunch room.

“Through ACCESS, organisations can offer their employees the opportunity to work with a qualified clinical nutritionist to start the journey of wellbeing.”

Five foods to supercharge your day! 

For a healthy gut, it’s essential to keep our good bacteria happy. These good little bacteria thrive on many of the foods that are great for us too!  Essential fatty acids, polyphenols and fibre found in fruits, veggies, nuts and seeds, are all known to assist in a healthy tummy. Jan recommends eating:

Raw Nuts

Nuts contain serotonin, which runs low when you’re feeling down. They’re also full of antioxidants and essential healthy fats too – great for overall brain health!

Snack tip: Try a nut butter spread on top of berries or other fruits and veg. Adding some cacao makes a delicious choc nut butter spread.


Berries are very rich in antioxidants. They therefore serve as a strong defense against brain degeneration while also boosting happy chemicals in your brain. Oh, and they’re berry yummy, too!

Sesame Seeds

Sesame seeds are powerful little mood boosters whose benefits stem from Tyrosine. This amino acid boosts the brain’s dopamine levels (another feel-good hormone essential for good moods).

Snack Tip: Try tahini – it’s sesame seed paste. It’s great to use in various home-made dips, smoothies or protein balls.

Raw Cacao

Raw cacao is super high in antioxidants that acts as a fantastic brain protective. In addition, cacao naturally contains serotonin and helps boost it. Cacao can also stimulate the release of a compound called anandamide, which causes a slight euphoric, blissful feeling. No wonder we often crave chocolate when we’re feeling down!

Snack Tip: Add to a smoothie or blend it with an avocado for a healthy choc mousse! For a healthy hot chocolate mix cacao with a milk alternative such as almond or coconut milk and sweeten to taste.


Mushrooms are rich in B vitamins and vitamin D. These all help to keep the brain and nervous system healthy and contribute to a positive mood.