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Food Desert inside a Food Paradise

on March 16, 2012

This week has made me think a lot about how the food availability in my area affects my health. I’ve actually never really connected the two before. It definitely makes sense though. And I think I feel the effects of the grocery gap more when I’m at school (which totally should not be the case). I’m so fortunate to live in an area (at home) where I have access to fresh food. I have a grocery store within walking distance and another within five minutes of driving. So this week has made me realize how lucky I am.

And I know that our university is by no means located in a “food desert.” In fact we have 1 grocery store within walking distance and 2 within driving distance. But in actuality, it’s really bad how restrictive our food options are here. This might be slightly dramatic, but hear me out. Students pay $44,000 a year in tuition. We spend about $2500 on a mandatory food plan per semester (so that’s $5000 on food per year). We don’t have an option! That’s the part that gets me the most I think. We have to pay for the meal plan if you live on campus (with the exception of apartments on Liberty Alley and the apartment complex that the school just bought). I would SO much rather go to Weis or Giant and cook my own meals than eat caf food for every meal. It’s not healthy. Now, I know I’m not exactly the poster child of good health. But I do like a lot of different kinds of fruit and certain veggies. For example, I could eat peas or green beans with every meal. But the caf doesn’t serve them at every meal, so most of the time I don’t eat a vegetable at all. I would much rather spend my (aka my parent’s) $5000 on healthy food that I actually want. I don’t have tons of extra money lying around to spend on more food, so for the most part I eat what is provided in front of me.

This should change.


One response to “Food Desert inside a Food Paradise

  1. Sheri Snyder says:

    Bravo, in every way. ❤

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