How to eat healthy on campus


Dylan Haviland – General Assignment Reporter 

The vast amounts of foods available at Connecticut Hall and the Adanti Student Center in Southern Connecticut State University provide a diverse dish of edibles ready for ravenous students.  A typical day at Connecticut Hall include options such as: an omelet station, main entrees that are constantly rotating, a corner brimming with pastries and the salad station posted in the back.

The issue that lies behind the plethora of foods in both dining halls is what to make of the food you select, primarily in creating a healthy meal choice.  Students need to maintain a sense of balance and consciousness while choosing meals that are essential to a wholesome diet.

Dr. Doris Marino, an assistant professor in school health education at Southern, recommended that students take particular attention to the amount of carbohydrates they consume while on campus.

“If you look around there’s a lot of foods that have more carbohydrates but students need to try to find a balance in eating vegetables, fruits, getting enough protein and balancing out the amount of carbohydrates that they eat,” said Marino.

food pie

In the dining halls finding a balance and abstaining from a gross amount of carbohydrates means getting the portions right for a plate.

According to the “Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010” on www.health.gov, a chart in association with the Institute of Medicine recommended macronutrient proportions for adults between: 45 to 65 percent carbohydrates, 10 to 35 percent protein, and 20 to 35 percent fat.

“You just have to be conscious of what you are consuming day to day,” said Marino.  “You don’t have to cut out carbs completely but you really need to watch how much you are eating on a daily basis.”

Being conscious though while visiting a dining hall that almost acts as a limitless buffet may sometimes be a challenge to students.  In a single day at Connecticut Hall a student could choose to drink nothing but soda and consume foods high in carbohydrates such as a pizza all day.  To challenge unhealthy meal choices, knowing the proper portions of what to eat is half the battle.

“Something I like is when Conn has vegetables and things like that,” said Samantha Foley,  freshman at Southern social work major.  “And they don’t have it all the time and that’s when I go to the alternatives with like going for fries and pizza instead of choosing healthier options like cooked vegetables and actually well cooked rice.”

Knowing what size to make a meal can help build a healthy eating habitat and diet.  A student should be conscious towards how large they are making their plate, especially if it stacked with unhealthy options.

“It’s a mental thing you don’t have to eat everything, you don’t have to take three plates of pizza,” said Julio Sanchez,  sophomore chemistry major.  “If you want to be unhealthy that’s your business but there is definitely healthy alternatives here.”

Utilizing the salad bar at Connecticut Hall with the entrees can be a preferable option when deciding how to fill your plate.  Try mixing a plate with lettuce and tomatoes along with a side of beans to go with an entrée.

“I try to always have more vegetables,” said Foley, “if they have a nice cooked vegetables over when you walk in I try to mainly fill my plate with that and then if there’s some pasta I’ll put a little, probably a third of my plate will be carbs and all the rest will be vegetables.”

Photo Credit: Derek Torrellas, Lauren Jong

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