Seeds of Change
What is "Seeds of Change"?
Seeds of Change is our name for series of initiatives designed to improve the way we serve the UCR campus. The goal is a healthy, well-balanced diet - consisting of options from all food groups - in right-sized portions, with an emphasis on those derived from plants.
Our focus is on fresh produce, lean protein, whole grains and heart-healthy unsaturated oils, while limiting consumption of highly processed foods, refined grains, sugar, sodium/salt and saturated fat.
Healthier for You and the Planet
Part of our goal is to provide our students with a more healthful college experience, to encourage self- and environmental respect, and promote change that is sustainable throughout adulthood.
From the menus we plan to the ingredients we source, we are working to change how UC Riverside eats.
Our "Seeds of Change" program was inspired by the Menus of Change initiative, a project of the Culinary Institute of America and Harvard University's T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Begun in 2011, Menus of Change looks at the future of food and the food business, and how it relates to health, sustainability and the environment.
Principles of Healthy, Sustainable Menus
Click here to view an infographic of the 24 Principles that drive the Seeds of Change initiative. Some relate to what foods to feature and what items to avoid; others guide restauranteurs and dining organizations on planning for the future.
Ask the Nutritionist
Have questions about our Seeds of Change initiatives, or other nutritional efforts? Submit an email to our nutritionist. You'll get a response within 1-3 business days. Your question can be kept confidential.
Think Produce First
Following new nutritional guidelines, we urge our guests to fill half their plate with produce, and now serve plant-based dishes in all our restaurants at every meal - including seasonal fruits, colorful vegetables and green salads.
Whole, Intact Grains
As an alternative to white flour and refined grains, we offer slow-metabolizing whole and intact grains wherever possible: in breads, cooked grains and side dishes. Oats, quinoa, brown rice and other intact grains are now standard ingredients in many dishes.
Choose Healthier Oils
We've substituted plant oils and other ingredients that contain unsaturated "good fats" for saturated fats and hydrogenated vegetable oils. We use high-flavor fats, such as butter, in limited applications.
Fresh & Local Ingredients
We are increasingly sourcing our fruits, vegetables, meat and dairy from local sources (those within 250 miles). Not only does this insure our ingredients are fresher, but reduced transportation needs lowers our carbon footprint and reduces truck exhaust.
Reduce Sugary Beverages
Added sugar in soft drinks and fruit juices is seen as a principal contributor to type 2 diabetes and other chronic conditions. Accordingly, we offer a wide range of healthier options, including spa waters, unsweetened teas, vitamin-enhanced waters and sugar-free soft drinks.
Better "Blended" Burgers
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