Opinion: New food options can be healthy if students eat wisely

Photo+by+Nao+Enomoto%0ASpellmann+center+holds+one+of+the+campus+cafes.

Photo by Nao Enomoto Spellmann center holds one of the campus cafes.

Brendan Ochs | Reporter
From Print [April 19, 2016] | Legacy

Next fall new meal plans are coming to the students.

Photo by Nao Enomoto Spellmann center holds one of the campus cafes.
Photo by Nao Enomoto
Spellmann center holds one of the campus cafes.

Is this a good thing? Yes and no. Are these options healthy? It depends on what you get and what your goals are.

The buffet, regardless of how good or bad some may think the food tastes, is a great way for students to get the nutrition they need. There are many combinations of meals alone which you, the student, can make. There really are quite a few healthy options in the buffet (i.e. the salad bar). Some healthy options can be as simple as a plate of vegetables and a few pieces of turkey from the deli.

One of the issues I see is the sodium content. A lot of the food at the buffet does contain larger amounts of sodium. The deli contains plenty of sodium, and large portions of the other entrées also contain lots of seasonings, which in turn can rack up the sodium content, not to mention the fatty dark meat chicken dishes. We aren’t really straying away from this with Chick-fil-A and Qdoba, considering their sodium content. Chick-fil-A does have its fair share of fried foods, and Qdoba does have a good portion of salty quesos. Fried foods aren’t good for you and contain a lot of bad fat. This has been a fact for quite some time now. That being said, there can be good choices in each.

Chick-fil-A does have grilled chicken items you can buy as well as salads. Qdoba might be a better option. If you ask for the right ingredients, you can make something that is good for the most part, but keep in mind the ingredients add up calorically very quickly.

There is a balancing act between the school and the students’ job of obtaining a healthy meal. Lindenwood has a responsibility to provide options for most everyone’s diet, including healthy options, but the decision to eat healthy is in the hands of the student. Can you find healthy options? Yes. Will the student choose that option? That is up to them.