Healthy foods now lead to positive futures for DCHS students


Allie Daro

DCHS Junior Jackson Hardin eats a healthy lunch that he brought to school. He has brought his own lunch to school every day this year.

Allie Daro

Healthy eating. Eating well. The Food Pyramid. Meal plans. Balanced diets. These are all familiar terms and phrases in today’s culture. Over the past decade or so, there has been an increased effort in society to raise diet awareness and healthy eating plans. How has it affected students here at David City High School?

For juniors Debbie White, Melvin Hernandez, Jackson Hardin, and sophomore Noah Styskal, it has helped them choose healthy options. All four say they typically choose healthy foods, but it might not be the absolute best choice or correct portion.

“I know it’s important for me in the future,” Hardin said.

The fact that eating healthy food now contributes to better health later on in life is common knowledge in today’s society. Students here at DCHS are eating healthy, even with busy schedules and not-so-great options available, such as fast food.

Styskal explained that he likes eating healthy and prefers his parents’ cooking. In fact, all three men prefer their parents’ food and only eat out if need be, whether it’s because they aren’t home or their parents are exhausted after a long day of work. White, on the other hand, eats out almost every night, but still manages to eat fairly healthy foods.

“[I eat] healthy stuff, just not very proportioned,” White stated.

So what is a proportional meal? Most people think everyone should eat about 2,000 calories each day. Why should athletes only eat the same amount of calories as others who don’t engage in as much physical activity?

According to Director of Sports Nutrition at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Lindsey Remmers, athletes should be eating more food. Athletes burn calories as they practice and play. The main purpose of food and nutrition is to meet personal caloric needs, which differ from person to person. The main way to make sure you’re eating the “right” amount of food is by filling yourself up with healthy options, not by limiting yourself to a small number of calories.

For example, if a football player goes home after practice and eats a steak and mashed potatoes every night for supper, it’s going to affect him differently than if a typical student had the same meal every day. For the football player, large meals that sustain their hunger will help them take in enough calories. If a typical student ate the same way, it would eventually become apparent that they’re eating excessive amounts of food because of the way too many calories affect their body. However, caloric needs still vary from person to person. Not every athlete is going to eat more food than the average student. The most important thing is to fill yourself up with healthy foods, similar to White, Hernandez, Hardin, and Styskal.

All four are choosing healthy options, whether it’s their parents cooking or a meal in a restaurant. They’re eating foods that fill them up and make them feel good. They might not be eating whole-grain bread or having oats and yogurt for dessert, but they’re still making informed choices about what’s good for them, now and in the future.