Grant Proposal for Nutrition

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Jun Wakabayashi
6 Baccarat Ct
Montville, NJ 07045
October 6, 2010
Peggy Policastro
Instructor and Director, Healthy Dining Team
255 Davison Hall
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
RE: Proposal for an online dietary web service moderated by staff of professional nutritionists Dear Ms. Policastro,
The Rutgers Dining Services of Rutgers University is the third largest student dining operation in the country, operating five student dining facilities that serve over 4.5 million meals annually and 20,000 to 25,000 meals on a daily basis. Of all the students that utilize the dining facilities, first-year students, many of which are experiencing a prolonged period away from home for the very first time, are the ones that find themselves at the all-you-can-eat frenzy for 2-3 meals a day, 7 days a week. Speaking from personal experience as a freshman, I, myself, was tempted by the unlimited selection of foods and splurged like there was no tomorrow, that is, until I stepped on the scale a few weeks later. Having the breakfast, lunch, and dinner menu dictated by parents every day until college, the majority of freshman lack basic nutritional knowledge to effectively produce and maintain a healthy diet that would invariably rule out any sort of excessive, and unhealthy weight gain. I feel that implementing a online web service in which students can input their own physical characteristics to produce a strict diet regiment based off of the daily foods that the dining halls provides would severely decrease any chance of unwarranted increase in weight, and ultimately diminish obesity rates in America within the next several years. Obesity Plaguing America

A greasy cheeseburger coupled with deep-fried French fries along with a slice of pizza drenched in oil and to top it off, a cold carbonated soda is an example of a typical lunch set for a college student, and more specifically, a freshman. Essentially the first prolonged period away from home, freshmen tend to splurge without boundaries—inevitably causing significant weight gain which is most likely attributed to the consumption of larger portions of food in the endless, all-you-can-eat frenzy that is the dining hall, the uncontrollable snacking during ungodly hours, and the lack of physical activity throughout the semester. Stress and minimal physical activity aside, food can be suspected as the main culprit behind the apparent weight gain, dubbed “freshman 15”, that most first-year students encounter, although studies have shown that a 15 pound increase in weight is but a fable as statistics depict that the average weight gain in freshmen is actually closer to 9 pounds (Carithers 2). According to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES), in 2003-2004 approximately two thirds or 66% of the adults living in the US are overweight or obese (Gropper 1). Furthermore, results from both the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health and the NHANES show that during the transition from adolescence to adulthood, a high proportion of adolescents becomes obese and actually remains obese; in addition, because obesity is not easily reversible those who are obese or develop obesity as young adults are at increased risks of obesity through adulthood (Desai 1). So despite a mere 9 pound increase, it is a small stepping stone that will eventually add to that staggering statistic if a proper diet and healthy nutrition isn’t maintained. Veering towards obesity is a life-threatening hazard in itself, as doing so significantly increases the risk of contracting several health conditions including hypertension, dyslipidemia, sleep apnea, and some cancers (Gropper 2). As frightening as it may be, the negligence of something as trivial as a diet can significantly decrease one’s mortality rate. Approximately 300,000 deaths in the United States each year are attributed to unhealthy dietary habits and physical inactivity, in addition to the fact that the US invests $33 billion...
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