Sodexo Launches Healthy Game Play for On-Campus Dining
November 04, 2011
by Jennifer Toone Corrigan
Students, faculty and staff at Stonehill College are playing healthy games at mealtime. Sodexo, through a robust regional nutritional initiative, is leading fun, interactive nutritional activities during on-campus dining periods to increase awareness about healthy choices and eating patterns.
Danielle Shargorodsky, RD, LDN, Sodexo's Regional Nutritional Manager, spearheads the program helping on-campus managers and chefs promote varied and balanced food options and create menu choices following the new USDA guidelines promoting a reduction in sugars, fats and sodium.
Stonehill College students participate in a mealtime game called "Rate Your Plate" in which players determine if their food choices are balanced in accordance with the USDA dietary guidelines 2010 and the "My Plate Model" which consists of 1/2 fruit and vegetables, ¼ protein, ¼ starch. The game demonstrates that all foods can fit into healthy eating as long as half the plate is fruit and vegetables.
"Although, no food is ‘bad,' moderation is key with college favorites such as pizza, burgers, fries, and pasta," said Shargorodsky. "So grab that slice of pizza (we always have a balanced flat bread pizza special) but journey to the salad bar or get the delicious vegetable of the day to balance your plate."
Shargorodsky spends a meal period, usually lunch, going table-to-table and individually speaking to each receptive student, faculty, and staff member. She asks how they would "rate their plate" nutritionally then provides friendly, positive comments and suggestions on how to best balance their plate.
"I have actually had students go back to the dining hall and choose fruit and vegetables after participating in this activity," said Shargorodsky. "This is also a great way to open nutrition discussion with students and identify what students are looking for, any problems they may have, and obtain feedback."
"'Rate Your Plate' is an insightful activity that offers students the opportunity to gain nutritional information and guidance in a fun and non-threatening manner," said David Miller, Sodexo General Manager at Stonehill College. "Students who participate enjoy the game and learn something along the way."
Sodexo is launching this new regional health and wellness program on campuses throughout New England using innovative approaches and services. In addition to interactive games, monthly nutrition articles are appearing in student newspapers.
Students have direct access to a dietitian via email and a Facebook fan page, Sodexo Campus Health & Wellness, where students, faculty, and staff can "Ask the Dietitian" questions and receive answers. Nutrition handouts geared toward first year students are available. Sodexo's Regional Nutrition Manager, Danielle Shargorodsky participates in health fairs, conducts healthy cooking demonstrations, and leads nutrition presentations to generate excitement and build awareness among the campus community.
For more information, contact Danielle Shargorodsky, RD, LDN of Sodexo On-Site Solutions at 401-500-5151 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.