Andrea Ihara writes in Corporate Wellness Magazine vending machines — which satisfy office snacking needs — can become a stronger part of a company’s wellness plan.

How? First, let your vending machine operator ” know that you are aligning the vending machines with your current wellness initiatives and that it will take a partnership between you and the vending operator to make this happen.Whereas we can hope that you won’t need to change vending companies, there are lots of healthy focused vending companies who will be happy to help you.I would suggest asking the operator to begin with 1/3 of your vended items falling into healthy guidelines.There are lots of lists available of healthy snacks.Your own vending operator should be able to provide a list of what he has access to.”

Another tip: “If your vending operator has newer technology – you can request weekly or monthly reporting of what is being purchased from the machine.The vending operator does not have to provide this, but they will want to keep your account and keep you happy.These reports can be done completely anonymouslyand can show you the trends.”

Finally, Obamacare can also play a role in making vending machine options healthier: “As a result of the Affordable Care Act, it will be required for vending operators (with 20 or more machines) to display the calories of snacks and drinks in their machines (pending legislation).These calorie listings will have to be visible prior to purchase.As mentioned earlier, nutrition label visibility may be a part of the technology offering on the machine.You can request this.”