The New Mexico

Views 104 | Time to read: 4 minutes | Uploaded: 9 - 16 - 2014 | By: Molly Wilcox

First day of school: what seems like 5,000 new students crammed into the DC, everyone lost looking for friends, lines like Disneyland to get even the tiniest morsel of food.
And me, standing there imagining the Mean Girls scene when everyone acts like they’re wild animals in slow motion for about five seconds.

Just as I’m about to give up and scrounger some food from my dorm room instead, I look to my right and see the most glorious sight: no line in El Tejado!

I realized that the DC had switched things up on us over the summer: El Tejado is now Haley’s Gluten-Free, a section that serves almost exactly what’s in the main food line (which has been practically wound around the entire DC lately) except, obviously, there is no gluten.

As many of you returning students have probably noticed, the DC has mixed things up a bit since the end of last semester. Instead of Pedro’s Mexican food selection, or otherwise know as El Tejado, there is a new Gluten-Free hot food line.

Although I do not have Celiac Disease and I do name Mexican food as my favorite type of food, I’m very happy with the new choices in the DC. It’s nice to see Sodexo catering to the needs of students on a bigger level than a mini fridge.

I personally believe that nutrition is one of the most underrated discussions in our society for multiple reasons. First of all, proper nutrition helps us maintain a healthy, active lifestyle, which allows us to have more energy throughout the day: something every college student needs.

The cool thing about Haley’s Gluten Free section is that the food is simple; there are less unnecessary sauces and glazes.

As we all have probably noticed by now, many Westmont students are very health conscious. Not to mention the line is always short (or non-existent) and the food actually tastes great.
I don’t know how many people are actually gluten free at Westmont. Regardless, I think it’s a great idea to incorporate a food line for both people who are and aren’t affected by Celiac Disease because it creates more wholesome and nutritious options.

But of course there is a downside: less Mexican food. But honestly, who even ate it every day, or even every other day? Maybe there were twenty or so students who were dedicated to eating in Pedro’s on a regular basis, but let’s be honest, no one should ever eat in Pedro’s everyday if they’re trying to live past 60. And the biggest hit was Taco Tuesdays, which they still supply, so really it’s a win, win situation: occasional Mexican food to satisfy our taste buds, yet our hearts will continue to work well past retirement.

Now, I’m definitely not saying that a gluten free diet leads to healthier humans. In fact, many gluten free substitutes compensate with more processed chemicals and butter. However, Haley’s is a great addition to our DC because it doesn’t use substitutes, but rather avoids gluten by keeping its recipes simple.

Research shows that only about one percent of Americans actually need to be on a gluten-free diet. If we are fortunate enough to be able to eat gluten, we should continue to eat whole grains. Whole grain products help you stay energized, control your blood sugar, and protect you from developing type two diabetes. I firmly believe that this Gluten-free fad will be short-lived for those who aren’t actually gluten intolerant and we’ll all look back at the trends of our college days and share a good laugh.

But as for now, I’m ready to embrace the new addition to our DC because who wouldn’t want a healthier meal option? I mean shoot, we’re forced to eat cafeteria food for the better part of nine months, we might as well try to help ourselves out a bit by eating more natural foods.


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