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Finding ways to make healthy eating on campus the simple choice

Posted February 20th, 2013 by nanjan

[Life@OSU, Feb. 20, 2013] — Oregon State University dining centers and shops benefited from a little expertise from Cornell last week when Kathryn Hoy of the Cornell Center for Behavioral Economics in Child Nutrition Programs came for a visit. Hoy was invited by the Moore Family Center and the College of Public Health and Human Sciences, as well as the Be Well Healthy Eating committee.

An expert on how layout, design and product placement affect the healthy eating habits of children, Hoy was able to provide input to UHDS, MU and student health services representatives on a number of campus eateries and stores, which they may be able to incorporate into changes that will increase the sales of more nutritious food items.

Hoy works with Brian Wansink at Cornell, who has done landmark work in healthy eating and developing smarter lunchrooms. Normally her area of expertise is grade school children but she was able to adapt much of what she knew to the college setting.

At Pangea, for example, she suggested that the restaurant feature less nutritional information and more photos of healthy meals, and offered ways to make healthy offerings appear to be the economic as well as the smarter choice.

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