Letter to the editor
Healthy food options needed
A common complaint among USC students is the lack of healthy, nutritional food options around campus. There are no markets that offer entirely fresh, organic produce within a mile of school. The nearest healthy, organic market is far and unreachable to many students. USC should open an organic market on campus so students have access to healthy food.
Sufficient studies have shown the negative impacts of poor nutrition on the human body and development of the brain. A 2004 study from the Journal of Health Sciences shows a strong correlation in the rise of obesity and fast-food restaurants in the United States since 1970.
It is evident that fast-food and artificial additives and pesticides severely impact one’s health. These foods do not give individuals the energy and nourishment needed to meet their greatest potential.
With back-to-back classes it can be difficult to leave campus for hours at a time.
There are countless days where students have gone hungry because of the lack of accessibility to a decent meal or have been forced to resort to Panda Express. As a student who lives near campus, I am constantly faced with this dilemma and witness others dealing with it frequently.
In its role and mission statement, USC claims its central mission is, “The development of human beings and society as a whole through the cultivation and enrichment of the human mind and spirit.”
The human mind cannot be “cultivated” and “enriched” properly without sufficient nutrition and diet. The Ronald Tutor Campus Center, however, continues to offer fast food of low quality.
By low quality, I mean food made from cheap, impure ingredients with little to no nutritional value. Not one campus center restaurant offers all pure, organic ingredients.
USC should open a market on campus with quality standards that offers the basic essential food categories of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and protein.
These foods would be offered with the options of buying them fresh, organic and free of artificial preservatives, flavors, sweeteners and hydrogenated fats.
This market would make better food and nutrition available to students, improving their overall quality of life.
Students who normally make the trek to the nearest Whole Foods would save time and gas by walking and could use their USCard to pay for groceries. Though better quality food is more expensive, students should at least have the option to buy it because what we eat directly impacts our health.
USC is comprised of a thriving student body and faculty that rely on a proper diet.
Our school is only as good as its students and faculty, and these individuals are only as good as the food that nourishes them.