Nutrition is an aspect of student wellness that is a must. One way to meet this need of students is to make nutritional information easily available to them.
At Old Dominion University, one of the ways they fulfill student wellness is by providing nutritional programs through their campus dietician, Tracy Conder, that meets students on their turf.
There are two cornerstone nutrition offerings at Old Dominion:
Nutrition Corner: Each week throughout the semester, the campus dietician is in the lobby of the Student Recreation Center providing information on a specific nutrition topic. She is also available to speak to students one-on-one regarding any nutritional questions.
Monarch Fuel: Based on studies that show improvement to muscular strength in as little as three weeks when a few key eating strategies are put into place, students are offered cutting-edge sports nutrition from the campus dietician at the Monarch Fuel table in the Student Recreation Center. Once a month, this program encourages students to get the most out of their workout by assessing what they’re eating.
“These programs are designed to inspire students to eat healthy and teach them easy ways to apply the nutrition foundation concepts of meal balance, selecting healthy food and hydration in practical ways,” said Conder. “The programs are also important because they allow students to sample a new recipe and talk to a registered dietitian who can answer questions they may have.”
For the Nutrition Corner program, Conder provides recipes such as healthy apple dip, homemade granola and overnight oats. She highlights the health benefits of each key ingredient. For the Monarch Fuel program, Conder provides information on eating before, during and after exercise. She also provides information on hydration importance and recipes to support the topics of discussion, such as no bake energy bites, chia recovery pudding, and almond and date bars.
Conder also emphasizes the importance nutrition plays in supporting students through other roles such as the energy to exercise, be active and tackle study goals for their classes. “Hydration, in particular, helps with clear thought and quick decision making,” she explained. “Additionally, part of the wellness wheel involves culture – it’s fun to explore healthy eating from different cultures and incorporate that in our meals.”
Not only does Conder offer these programs, but she also holds a one time, 45-minute nutrition 101 class at the Student Recreation Center once a month. Students are able to sign up for it online. “It covers all my favorite tips and basic nutrition foundation for healthy eating, grocery shopping, and fun and easy nutrition apps,” she said.