Problem with Del Mar Essay
September 26, 2012
Working Toward Healthy
In our world of ever growing technology and convenience it is making it easier for people to find themselves eating unhealthy foods. The typical college campus, whether it is a community college or four year college, is a prime example. Between homework, tests to study for, and jobs the college student’s life is hectic. And when it comes to finding something to eat during those hectic hours of the day, the students tend to find themselves navigating toward the quickest and cheapest sources of food, which coincidently are all the unhealthy options. But what the students may not notice is that some of the healthier options can cost about the same and take about the same time to purchase and consume. The problem is that these options are not being promoted to the same degree as the unhealthy options, which is why Del Mar should promote healthier food options in the dining hall as to encourage better eating habits. Obesity in our nation is a problem that is always brought up when speaking about nutrition. According to the Journal of American College Health, “The prevalence of obesity in US college-aged people was 12% in 1998, but increased to as high as 36% in 2004.”(Gills) With the percentage of obesity rising it is apparent that something should be done to educate students in or draw attention to the healthy way to eat. “Strong et al suggest that the college environment is conducive to overconsumption because of the ready availability of energy-dense foods, which may be contributing to the increased prevalence of obesity. In addition, Knaust and Foster found that college students have difficulty in accurately selecting appropriate serving sizes.” (Gills) Dining halls at most colleges are set up like a buffet so the students are welcome to take as much as they wish to buy or feel they can consume, but with this comes the responsibility of only getting as much as you need and not over doing it. Though it seems the average students eating habits are far from nutritional. Most of the foods the students ingest are junk foods that have loads of sugar and cards in them.
Most college student’s diets consist of high fat and low in any nutritional value. “They typically consume high intakes of total fat, saturated fat, and cholesterol, and low fiber intake. Few college students eat five or more servings of fruits and vegetables per day.”(Gills) The students tend to navigate toward pizza and other junk foods that do nothing for their body because with all the stress and lack of time students chose what they eat based on “taste, time, convenience, and cost, rather than nutritional value.” (Evans) They pass up all the foods that help their body in exchange for foods that satisfy their taste buds. They over eat the things that are bad for their bodies and do not eat enough of the things that are nutritional for them.
My main focus is to address the lack of promotional items for the healthy section of the food court on campus. Starting with the east campus dining hall, I would like to see some improvement in that area. When you enter the dining hall you are met with the claimer of voices and the smell of food. Right off the bat you catch the smell of hamburger and fries as well as whatever else is being made that day. From the start you are attracted to the familiar smell of the unhealthy all American meal. And yet the healthy options go almost unnoticed. The actual serving area is ¾ unhealthy options including foods like chips, burgers, chicken fried steak, French fries, pizza, soda, and whatever happens to be the special for the day. Not to mention the vast supply of vending machines that riddles the campus grounds. The healthier foods are in a station of to the corner of the serving area. Here they serve chicken/tuna salads, veggie wraps and other healthier options with your choice of what vegetables you would like to...