Swinging Bridge Magazine: March 2021

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tudents sometimes find eating a healthy, balanced diet is a difficult feat to conquer when only having on-campus dining options available. While that may mean skipping warm cookie days or the dessert bar, it is entirely possible to eat healthily at Lottie, The Falcon and The Union. “At Lottie, we always offer a salad bar,” restaurant manager Jeffrey Roman said. “There are always dishes such as rice, tofu and steamed or roasted vegetables available. But most often, when chicken sandwiches, chicken tenders or popcorn shrimp is offered, the salad bar and other healthier options are slow.” While these chicken and shrimp options may be the most popular, that does not mean they are healthy. This goes for the grab and go items at The Falcon, Cafe Diem and The Union as well. “I think quick and easy can be healthy and I think our retail locations offer healthy grab and go options,” Roman said. “It is a matter of students being in the habit of selecting carrots or celery or hard-boiled eggs instead of a candy bar or a bag of chips.” Roman recommends that students check out and take advantage of the university’s nutritional information and personnel. “One of our best resources is Nicole Benner,” he said. “Nicole is a registered dietitian nu-


tritionist and can work directly with students concerning nutritional information, food allergies and eating disorders.”

If you are looking to eat healthy, but do not know where to start, Roman suggests to start with your attitudes.

Not only are Benner’s services free to students, but she will also walk you through a specific food plan and communicate with dining services for you.

“I would have to say that desire to choose healthy options is what keeps most students from eating healthier. Our busiest days are often when something like Falcon Filet sandwiches are on the menu,” he said.

“She will work with students to create specific eating plans,” Roman said, “and she will act as a liaison between a student with food issues and the chefs at Lottie to ensure that our students’ needs are taken care of.” Sometimes those needs are intolerances, like gluten and lactose. If you are affected by one of these, do not worry because Lottie takes this into consideration. “At Lottie, our gluten-free area is full of fresh vegetables and other healthy items that are naturally gluten-free,” Roman said. “Students who are looking for healthy alternatives should definitely give that area a look.” This means that if you do not have to have an intolerance to enjoy delicious, healthy foods from the gluten-free section in Lottie. If you are looking to move to a vegan diet, the chefs have you covered as well.

It all starts with the inclination to eat healthily. If you want it, it is there. If you only go to on-campus dining options to eat things like cheeseburgers, chicken tenders and Falcon Filet sandwiches, the healthy eating factor is thrown out the window. “In general, the kitchen staff offers healthy alternatives to students looking to eat healthier, while at the same time providing delicious, well-balanced food that satisfies the needs and desires of the university community,” Roman said. Healthy options are not the most popular, but in order to live a good, healthy lifestyle they must be considered. Food is the fuel for the body and if what you put in is not good, what you get out of it will not be either. Keep that in mind next time you have the option to choose a salad over another unhealthy meal.

“Our hot lines have vegetarian or vegan items that are typically not made with cheese or butter,” Roman said. THE SWINGING BRIDGE