During Barack Obama’s time as President, his wife and First Lady Michelle Obama spearheaded many initiatives involving health and fitness. At the top of the list of nutrition concerns is a claim that American’s consume too many calories. According to the President’s Council on fitness, sport and nutrition; typical American diets exceed the recommended intake levels or limits in four categories: calories from solid fats and added sugars; refined grains; sodium; and saturated fat. This is an issue that doesn’t stop at the doors the Hubbell Dining Hall at Drake University. Like Michelle Obama, Drake’s Dietitian Lucas Flaherty is trying to combat calorie intake on campus.
“We do have an initiative, as Sodexo as a whole. It’s called Mindfull. And that’s going to be a program that is geared toward eating healthier,” Flaherty explained. “So you look for a little sign, on our signage there is a little apple shaped like a heart. Those are the healthy choices, the Mindfull way to eat on campus.” Flaherty is also trying to make advances for people with food related allergies. One of the first things he did when he got to Drake about two and a half years ago was lobby for more options for people with food allergies. He was successful in establishing a food allergy nook in the Hubble Dining Hall and likes to keep open conversation with people with food allergies to better suit their needs.
Along with keeping open conversation with people with food allergies Sodexo strives to constantly make changes to suit any given students wants and desires. Every couple months Sodexo management meets with the student board of directors to see what kind of changes the student body wants. Many Drake students are pleased with their meal situation. Bob Pankrukhin says there are unhealthy things on the menu but they can be avoided.
“Well I mean it just depends on what you want to get, like if you want to go to the salad bar in Hubbell you’re going for a salad, as long as you don’t put bad dressings on it and stuff it’s healthy,” Pankrukhin said. “But most of the time, like melt station, everything is fried there. So it just depends on where you go. But if you dig deep enough you’re going to find gold.”
With Donald Trump’s entry into the white house our country has seen the removal of several of Barack Obama’s efforts. We will have to see how the new President handles fitness and nutrition.