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Student food choices personal responsibility

Study finds students unhappy with options

Photo by Gabrielle Plonka
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Reported by Gabrielle Plonka

It’s not up to colleges to tell students what to eat, it’s up to students to take responsibility for their choices says a Langara College professor.

In January 2018, Meal Exchange published findings 55 per cent of Ontario college students are unhappy with the lack of healthy options offered by foodservice providers.

Consumer based food options

But registered dietician and professor at Langara College, Monica Molag, said that campus choices are consumer based and unhealthy options are only supplied because they’re in demand.

“No one’s forcing anyone to buy french fries or potato chips—they have apples and oranges down there,” Molag said. “It’s all about personal responsibility and choice.”

While Langara chefs were unavailable to comment on the process behind their recipes and menu options due to a lack of media training, Chartwells food service spokesperson Stephanie Baxter said that the salad bar and hot vegetable station are popular on campus.

Meal prepping

Vikram Vij, a renowned Vancouver chef, said the best strategy for college students to maintain balanced and nutritional diets is by meal prepping. Vij said he instructed his own daughters to spend a few hours every weekend shopping and preparing lunches for the upcoming school week.

“You can cut down 50 per cent of your eating out [through meal prepping],” Vij said. “So you’re not eating junk when you’re hungry at the shops.”

For second year philosophy student, Kyle McLellan, packing food is both easy and important for his budget.

“They offer healthy options, and I’ve ordered a burger here before,” said McLellan while eating a homemade salad. “It’s all about balance and moderation.”

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