Dietetic Coordinated Program gives healthy snacking tips

On the first floor of Student Union, student Services and the UConn Coordinated Program in Dietetics had a presentation on common food myths. (Photo by Eric Yang/The Daily Campus)

Three students from the Dietetic Coordinated Program gave students tip on healthy snacking and debunked common food myths at their presentation in the Student Union on Thursday.

Inna Kagan, Mallory Kantor and Jaclyn Rose, dietetic majors in the Dietetic Coordinated Program, started with reasons people snack, such as not having enough time.

They said women should have 25 grams of sugar a day, while men should have 38.

Rose mentioned Quaker Oat granola bars have additives and are a healthier alternative are Lara Bars.

Kagan talked about how important food labels are and what she usually looks for, including number of servings and nutrient density. Sugar, fat and sodium are good to eat in moderation, but excess is not healthy. When looking at a food label, the less ingredients the better.

“In nutrition, I don’t use the terms good or bad snacks,” Rose said. “I say use caution.”

Rose recommended healthy snack alternatives, including Skinny Pop Popcorn, dried fruit, Sabra hummus with pretzels and Babybel cheese. They also gave a list of healthy food options on campus. They recommended Dog Lane smoothies, Student Union vegetable cups, Starbucks’ protein box, Bookworm Kind Bars and One Plate Two Plates’ salads.

Kagan also suggested making DIY snacks like mason jar veggies and yogurt parfait.

“I usually look at Pinterest or Buzzfeed for ideas,” Kagan said. She also recommended using the Commuter Hall fridge inside the Student Union.

The group talked about different food myths that exist and debunked them.

Eating fat makes you fat: It actually depends on the type of fat. Monounsaturated fats and polyunsaturated fats are better than other fats.

Count calories to stay healthy: It may restrict the body from getting all the nutrients it needs. It also encourages ignoring hunger, which is bad in the long run. Instead, focus on a diet with with whole grain, fruits, vegetables and proteins. They recommended using the app Myfitnesspal.

Organic food is better for you: There is no scientific evidence to prove this. Studies found no increased risk when nonorganic foods are consumed. People should look for fruits with high pesticide residue. They showed the dirty dozen on EWG, fruit and vegetables found to have traces of pesticide.

For nutrition information, the group said UConn has dietitians students can visit in Student Health Services.

“I feel like I got some useful information that I did not know before which might be helpful if I move off campus,” Ryan Bologna, a third-semester journalism major, said.


Joshua Oculam is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at joshua.oculam@uconn.edu.