Students who want to eat healthy on campus and establish positive habits for their future have a variety of options at GVSU

| 2/18/15 10:31pm

In conjunction with National Eating Disorders Awareness Week, Grand Valley State University is celebrating Love Your Body Week until Feb. 20. Many events and activities have been organized throughout the week to bring attention to topics, such as healthy eating and overall wellness, eating disorders and body image.

The week began with Laura Burkett, owner of Real Food Wellness, who introduced students to the idea and practice of mindful eating. She told students that, in order to have a healthy lifestyle, one must start with mindful eating – or being aware of what is happening when we eat. Body image plays into this because many people think poorly of themselves and believe, incorrectly, that losing weight is the key to a healthy self. 

As college students, many of us often make excuses that eating healthy foods is time consuming or too expensive for our meager budgets. However, there are many campus resources that students can and should take advantage of during their time at GVSU. 

First, the Recreation Center on the Allendale Campus offers many workout classes and special programs, in addition to the standard exercise facilities it provides for members of the Laker community. There are even personal fitness trainers who will help anyone who wants a more structured program for optimal health. Students, faculty and staff can get also discounts on these services. 

Second, for students who need assistance with food options, the Women's Center provides a food pantry. Anyone can donate items, and anyone can obtain the items they need just by walking in and asking. Don't be afraid to use these services. They are here for students. 

For students with a meal plan, campus dining can help maintain a healthy diet. Instead of french fries or chips, students can choose healthier choices like side salads or fruit. There has also been a push for more vegetarian and vegan options for those who do without meat or other animal products. While it can be more difficult to find and stick with these options, they are available.

Finally, students can also take another route and make their own food. The bus goes to Meijer, so those without a car still have a way to get to the grocery store. Additionally, cooking for yourself is helpful for students to prepare for life after college, and it allows them to choose exactly what they want for every meal. Students can also choose to alter recipes when making their own meals to make them healthier. Many on-campus housing facilities have a kitchenette or full size kitchen, allowing students to choose the route of making their own food if they feel it is their best option.

GVSU works to offer free services for students, so make sure to use these resources when it comes to healthy living. While it may be easier to buy junk food, with all the options readily available, choosing something healthy for a meal on campus is also an option.

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