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Tuesday, March 28, 2023

Two weeks ago, GatorWell and Gator Dining hosted Food Day, a national event concerning health and food justice. Student organizations, such as Student Animal Alliance and Catalysts for Change also showed support.

The Fresh Food Company, also known as Broward Dining, held the event and highlighted its locally sourced food items to show support for the local economy and organically/sustainable produced foods.

“Gator Dining has a strong sustainability effort at UF," said Natalie Rella, a GatorWell health promotion specialist, "so it was a perfect match for us to partner together supporting that idea."  

But what is Food Day?

Food Day is a national, “year-long catalyst for healthier diets and a better food system,” according to its website. The organization does not accept funding from the federal government or industries with the sole purpose of being unbiased and a voice for the people. Its goal is to, “inspire Americans to change their diets and food policies.” 

A live Twitter chat (#FoodDayChat), allowed national organizations to come together to raise awareness about our food systems. Supporters placed emphasis on the importance of fair wages for those who grow and collect our food. Many argued that food should be accessible to everyone, especially to those who gather it for the markets.

Food Day essentially informs the public about benefits of healthy eating and what one can do to help promote this lifestyle. It can help college students overcome the temptation of unhealthy eating and help decrease obesity. 

Let's get "inspired"

Rella, whose goal is to inform students on the importance of eating healthy and leading a healthy lifestyle, set up a table at UF's Food Day with a laminated paper plate, surrounded by different types of healthy foods. She then asked students to make a complete, healthy meal, including vegetables, protein, fruits, and whole grains.

“Challenge yourself to pick something you don’t eat every day and eat it for a whole week,” she said.

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