Local options growing for students seeking healthy foods
At CU and in Boulder there are healthy eating options for students to choose from to stay strong and energized.
With the weather turning colder by the day, the importance of finding foods that students can buy locally grows. Many of these foods can be found in the dining halls and local grocery stores around town.
Kim Potter, a freshman open-option major, eats many of her meals at Piazanos, the Cheyenne Arapaho Hall grab-n-go.
“I go to Piazanos because it seems healthier than the other grab-n-go’s,” Potter says. “It’s convenient because I live in the dorm.”
Katherine Abraham, a senior marketing major and the student supervisor of Piazanos said the food is, “as fresh as it gets.”
Abraham said that Piazanos is one hundred percent all natural and 80 percent organic. There are, “no preservatives or fake stuff.”
At Piazanos students can use their normal meal plan to buy food, but students are allowed fewer sides than other grab-n-go’s because of the higher price of buying organic.
“It’s more expensive for us to buy all-natural and organic stuff,” Abraham said.
Throughout the fall season, many students are left with leftover Halloween pumpkins – these can provide another method for healthy autumnal eating options.
Instead of throwing them out, the Boulder-based magazine Alternative Medicine advises utilizing the seeds inside the pumpkin as well as eating the pumpkin to make a nutritious snack.
Experts for this magazine state that the pumpkin seeds, which can be cooked in a variety of methods to produce a tasty fall treat, contain a good source of zinc and omega-3 fatty acids, which have proven to reduce the risk of heart disease. Pumpkins are also packed with carotenoids, which fight cancer. Visit Food Network for pumpkin recipes from soups to pies.
Groceries and staying well
Whole Foods Market at the Crossroads Common Shopping Center at 2905 Pearl Street has a wide array of organic and all natural choices.
The supermarket has many areas within the store that sell pre-made food for students who are looking to stock up on what comes close to a home cooked fall meal.
If students are in doubt about what makes a healthy option, Whole Foods offers a list on their Web site of the hundred healthiest foods including their nutritional information as well as what studies say about these foods.
Two foods on the Whole Foods list that have proven to be good for the immune system and hence good for colds and sickness include raw honey and green tea.
Raw honey has been shown to be anti-viral, anti-fungal and anti-bacterial. Furthermore, the EGCG in green tea is shown to fight the Flu.
According to the Whole Foods Web site, “EGCG appears to suppress viral RNA synthesis by altering the properties of the viral membrane.”
In an e-mail to The Campus Press Lauren Heising, the coordinator of sales and nutrition for CU Housing and Dining Services and administrative dietitian said there are some foods to incorporate and stay away from when a student is sick.
If it’s a respiratory cold, Heising recommends staying away from milk as it increases mucous production.
“I personally use honey in hot water or tea to help soothe a soar throat,” Heising says. “I also use ginger for an upset stomach,”
Heising said that a variety of healthy choices are available in the dining halls that fit many student dietary lifestyles.
“Our menus are designed to offer a variety of food options and include healthy options including baked/steamed/broiled entrees and other hot items, fresh fruits and vegetables, low fat dairy products and the like,” Heising said. “In addition, we have what I term ‘comfort foods,’ which aren’t usually the healthiest choices, but those which our customers really want.”
Contact Campus Press Staff Writer Jennifer Jacobs at Jennifer.L.Jacobs@campuspress.com