2

votes

What to tell my college so I can eat as Paleo as possible?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created June 11, 2010 at 1:13 PM

I am going to college in the fall, living in residence, and following a meal plan (mandatory). I have been eating paleo for several months, and once I started I never looked back. I am required to purchase a meal plan at my school that works by deducting money from your account with every purchase made, as opposed to a 3-meal a day buffet style (which I'm guessing might be easier for me to make proper choices).

The school's website indicates that they allow accommodations for students with medical conditions and intolerances. I feel like if I try explaining to their nutritionist that 'grains=poison', I'll just be told that they can't do anything about me...CW and all

I'm hoping I can send them an email from the intolerances side of things. How can I try and spin the situation when I contact them to see what kind of accommodations they can make for me? Perhaps inflammation?

PS - I was also wondering if this is unethical to try and find a way to eat a diet that I think is much healthier than what is standard fare there, because I suppose this is not a true intolerance, like shellfish allergies. However, I am paying by the plate, and it only makes sense for the school to charge me more per meal if I am not eating inexpensive rice or potatoes.

Thanks

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on July 23, 2010
at 03:54 AM

School cafeterias usually have ingredient listings for everything they serve. In California, it is the law and they are not allowed to add anything not on that list.

E242ecf1fecbac866894059f5304b4c6

(318)

on June 11, 2010
at 03:23 PM

i can't imagine that the cafeteria would accommodate cooking one student's meal in butter,a nd everyone else's in PUFA.... I am considering foods that I can keep in my room to supplement my lacklustre future diet - avocados, nut butters, coconut milk, canned tuna, hardboiled eggs...

0d2dec01a5ed9363a9915e111ae13f7e

(4583)

on June 11, 2010
at 03:13 PM

Just a side note, I've become skeptical of scrambled eggs after becoming aware of many diners' habit of thickening scrambled eggs and omlettes with pancake batter! I'm a poached/hardboiled/softboiled/fried sorta egg guy when I dine out. Then it at least looks like an egg! ....but fried is going to be in Soy oil or other crap oil.....

B4aa2df25a6bf17d22556667ff896170

(851)

on June 11, 2010
at 02:04 PM

tell them you follow the paleo diet... and that should respect that the same way they respect people on the vegan or vegetarian diet, otherwise its called discrimination.. :)

42321851a87415b340d215f629e574dc

(668)

on June 11, 2010
at 02:02 PM

Are you close with your doctor? He might write you a note about this...

4b97e3bb2ee4a9588783f5d56d687da1

(22923)

on June 11, 2010
at 01:52 PM

Agreed, if they balk tell them what you're not allergic to

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6 Answers

3
0d2dec01a5ed9363a9915e111ae13f7e

on June 11, 2010
at 01:22 PM

Just tell them you are allergic or react to PUFA Veggie oils, sugar/starch, gluten, phytates, lectins and such. Soy, Gluten, Dairy/casein, corn allergies, or Chron's/Celiac, and/or avoiding diabetes etc. All humans are pretty reactive in a negative way to this stuff.

4b97e3bb2ee4a9588783f5d56d687da1

(22923)

on June 11, 2010
at 01:52 PM

Agreed, if they balk tell them what you're not allergic to

B4aa2df25a6bf17d22556667ff896170

(851)

on June 11, 2010
at 02:04 PM

tell them you follow the paleo diet... and that should respect that the same way they respect people on the vegan or vegetarian diet, otherwise its called discrimination.. :)

42321851a87415b340d215f629e574dc

(668)

on June 11, 2010
at 02:02 PM

Are you close with your doctor? He might write you a note about this...

1
89985542ffc00c296552951369fe809a

on June 12, 2010
at 02:55 AM

When I lived in the dorms I told them I was allergic to wheat, dairy, gluten, sugar (including fruit) & soy... It worked really well... plus it helps to be incredibly nice to those who work in the dining hall.

1
4145b36f1488224964edac6258b75aff

(7821)

on June 11, 2010
at 02:13 PM

Yeah you could just say you have Crohn's and a gluten intolerance, and so you can only tolerate meats, maybe dairy and some vegetables. Problem is that you're going to get shitty food your freshman year no matter what you say or do. It sounds like they are giving you flexibility with their pay as you go system, so at least you can always make the best selection given the choices at hand. Looking back, it would have been impossible to eat strict paleo in my college cafeteria, but I could still have eaten pretty well. If I hadn't been a dietary retard at the time. Oh well.

0
B4aa2df25a6bf17d22556667ff896170

(851)

on June 12, 2010
at 02:20 AM

my college dining hall allowed me to get a take out box. We could fill the box and take the food to go. I dunno i fyour school allows this option, but if so, fill up the box with paleo foods, and add your own stuff in your room.

Most dining halls at least have a salad bar, which will allow you to get plenty of greens and vegetables (prob not organic or local but whatever). You can load up on that and then add your own canned salmon or tuna or whatever.

0
86a7abe4a54c4dc15ea44bacef00c5a8

on June 11, 2010
at 07:13 PM

The stress of classes and exams are hard enough without having dietary problems in the mix. I would definitely go the grain/starch intolerance route. if you have to use the term "allergy" for the school to understand, then do it. You might also say you are pre-diabetic and have to monitor your carbs, as to avoid having to take medication.

If necessary, discuss the Paleo diet with your doctor and explain how important it is for you to eat as healthy as possible while away at college. Explain how much better you feel (energy, headaches, mood, etc.) by cutting out most starches from your diet. I am sure your dr would agree that it is much healthier to steer away from pizza and burgers, typical college fare. Ask your doc to write a letter explaining that you need meats, eggs, fresh fruits and non-starchy vegetables available at your meals. It might help for you to give him/her an outline of what you want the letter to say and whom to address it to when you discuss it with your dr.

0
5d80aff9563aae9d350e632b20905ec1

(105)

on June 11, 2010
at 02:28 PM

I guarantee they'll have gluten free options for people with celiac, but that could absolutely contain corn or rice (and probably will). You could possibly tell them you'll need grain free options at each meal, and they should try to accommodate you.

Fortunately for lunch and dinner most college cafeterias have decent salad bars and usually some sort of meat (most likely grilled chicken or ground beef). Eggs, usually scrambled, are almost always served in the mornings along with sausage or bacon.

Honestly you're not going to be eating 100 percent pasture raised beef and organic greens every day, but you should be able to cobble something together in your caf that will be healthier than what most of your fellow students are eating. Take a decent Omega-3 supplement and don't drink too much and you'll be OK. :-)

E242ecf1fecbac866894059f5304b4c6

(318)

on June 11, 2010
at 03:23 PM

i can't imagine that the cafeteria would accommodate cooking one student's meal in butter,a nd everyone else's in PUFA.... I am considering foods that I can keep in my room to supplement my lacklustre future diet - avocados, nut butters, coconut milk, canned tuna, hardboiled eggs...

0d2dec01a5ed9363a9915e111ae13f7e

(4583)

on June 11, 2010
at 03:13 PM

Just a side note, I've become skeptical of scrambled eggs after becoming aware of many diners' habit of thickening scrambled eggs and omlettes with pancake batter! I'm a poached/hardboiled/softboiled/fried sorta egg guy when I dine out. Then it at least looks like an egg! ....but fried is going to be in Soy oil or other crap oil.....

62ed65f3596aa2f62fa1d58a0c09f8c3

(20807)

on July 23, 2010
at 03:54 AM

School cafeterias usually have ingredient listings for everything they serve. In California, it is the law and they are not allowed to add anything not on that list.

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