Niles West DECA created a community awareness campaign to encourage students to form healthy eating habits. DECA student Richard Chen came up with the idea after visiting college campuses and learning about the “freshman 15” or “freshman 20,” weight that students gain during their first year of college.
The healthy eating campaign also included:
- 10/31 Niles West News kickoff announcement w/ Dr. Ritter
- Dr. Ritter’s monthly email to parents on project
- Student Eating Habits Survey (11/1-11/15)
- PA Announcements for healthy tips
- Unhealthy eating awareness booth with free merchandise (5 lunch periods)
- Culinary Demo on Niles West News
- Dr. Huffman presentation @NW 11/22
- Congresswomen Schakowsky’s letter of support
- Collaboration w/ Quest on weekly healthy special
- Upcoming field trip to UIC nutrition program — Prof. presentation and tour of labs (Dec. 2 )
- Niles West News editorial
And here are their healthy eating tips:
Frozen veggies are as nutritious as fresh veggies because they are picked at the height of ripeness and are frozen immediately, ensuring they are packed with nutrients. So include veggies in your meals, frozen or fresh!
● Throw an apple, orange or banana in the lunch bag for those times when hunger takes one by surprise. These easy snacks are packed with antioxidants, nutrients, fiber, and other nutrients. Plus, fruits are refreshingly sweet, filling, and much cheaper than vending machines, saving money and preventing overeating!
● Empty calories are foods that are mostly sugars and fats with no nutrients. Think of them as a waste of money. Swap the empty calories of most crackers, chips, energy drinks, and sweets found commonly in vending machines for the crunchy goodness of whole grains, raw fruits and veggies, and nuts and seeds.
● Boys require an average of 2,800 calories/day and girls 2,200 calories a day. Avoid fad diets. Undereating can cause serious health issues like depression and mood changes, weakened heart, digestive issues, and osteoporosis. Eat regular, balanced meals.
● Breakfast literally means to break our fast. Overnight our body uses energy and nutrients to repair ourselves. Eating breakfast helps replenish the body. Better memory and concentration, weight loss, and higher fiber and nutrient intake are some of the many benefits of eating breakfast.
● 3,400 milligrams is the average amount of sodium that an American consumes, but 1,500 milligrams or less is the amount recommended for a healthy heart. Teens who have a high-sodium diet are twice as likely to develop high blood pressure as kids who have low-sodium diets.
● Pack some nuts and seeds as a crunchy snack! A small handful (about 1 oz.) of unsalted nuts and seeds provide good fats, energy, protein, and fiber. Good choices include almonds, peanuts, pistachios, hazelnuts, walnuts, and pumpkin and sunflower seeds.