Food selections lacking in cafeteria, Tiger’s den

The older we get, the more conscious we become of our health and eating habits. As children, it was natural to feast on foods high in fat and sugar on a daily basis. As adults, however, it is no longer a wise decision to gorge ourselves on sugar sweets and salty snacks.

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By Jessica Santibanez & Amber Richard

By Jessica Santibanez & Amber Richard

The older we get, the more conscious we become of our health and eating habits.

As children, it was natural to feast on foods high in fat and sugar on a daily basis. As adults, however, it is no longer a wise decision to gorge ourselves on sugar sweets and salty snacks.

Unfortunately, judging by the menu, the RCC cafeteria and Tiger’s Den must still regard students as small children by the items they choose to serve: pizza, french fries, nachos, corn dogs – the list continues, as do the calories. With choices like these, it appears that the college is teaching us the best way to become obese before the age of 30.

With the health food trend becoming more and more popular, it’s time for the food selections on campus to agree with the changing times. Besides this, it also must be noted that our general education requirements demand health and nutrition courses, but we contradict our learning by our eating habits. It is important that colleges endorse the information presented in these classes as a lifestyle. In order to promote these ideas, the college must have healthy choice options available to students while they are at school.

Sure, you can buy a sandwich or salad from both the RCC cafeteria and the Tiger’s Den, but unless it’s made in the hour that it takes to wait in line for it, who’s to say how long it’s been sitting in those refrigerators. The picture of a limp sandwich in a plastic container doesn’t look too appetizing to us.

We can only imagine how vegetarians, vegans, or anyone with a special diet feel when this is their only option. For them, foregoing lunch completely is sometimes the only choice they have. How many salads can one person eat in a week?

One solution to this problem is to leave school during breaks in between classes and dine elsewhere. If parking weren’t such a hassle, then I imagine most students would. During peak class hours, however, parking is almost impossible and if you leave, vultures will attack the unoccupied pavement and there’s a good chance you’ll have to walk a couple miles to get back.

But it isn’t just the lack of food choices at the cafeteria that’s upsetting, it’s also the lack of service. We can’t keep track of the number of times we’ve been in there when there was only one person working both the cash register and preparing food. It gets tiring just watching them run back and forth.

Other times, when an adequate staff was present, the service still lacked. We’re not expecting a five-star restaurant here, but is it necessary for the cashier to be talking on the phone while ringing up our tabs only to get it wrong because they weren’t paying attention?

Or even more upsetting is when no one is working at all. Food is cooking, people are standing in line, and there’s not one person in sight that seems to be running the place. It’s taken a lot of self-restraint to keep from going behind the counter and serving ourselves.

Waiting 30 minutes is frustrating enough, but when you’re waiting that long for someone to hand you a paper cup containing some form of potato and call it lunch, that’s just ridiculous.

So what can we do to make eating on campus a more pleasant experience? A good start would be for the cafeteria and Tiger’s Den to start serving some real food instead of something we could prepare in the microwave.

Restaurants like Carl’s Jr. and Subway propose healthy menu options. For example, Carl’s Jr. has a salad bar, fully equipped with fat free dressings, and also offers chicken substitutes and lettuse wrapped burgers.

Subway allows customers to choose exactly what goes into their sandwhich and even suggest diet plans for those looking to lose weight.

Having stands, such as Juice It Up, would allow students the opportunity to have a healthy drink on the go. Juice It Up provides a variety of fruit smoothies, fresh juices and organic coffee.

More people to serve students would also be helpful.

But if all else fails and we have to settle for eating wrong, let’s do it right. How about replacing both the cafeteria and Tiger’s Den with two Starbucks instead? Forget about health, let’s help each other stay awake in class while treating our palates at the same time.

How about it, coffee anyone?

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