The Voice of Bates College Since 1873

The Bates Student

The Voice of Bates College Since 1873

The Bates Student

The Voice of Bates College Since 1873

The Bates Student

Navigating Commons Nutrition

Whether you have dietary restrictions or struggle with an eating disorder, you’re not alone, and Bates Dining has resources to help you.
Katherine Merisotis/The Bates Student

Navigating a new environment is often stressful, and with all the adaptations you’re going to be making and all the new routines you’ll be learning in your first few weeks at Bates, your dietary needs and what you feel comfortable eating do not need to be a point of stress.

For many incoming students dining restrictions will be an issue, and so knowing where to research dining options may be helpful. One resource that will serve you well is the online menu provided by Bates dining facilities. This online menu shows when something contains soy, coconut, dairy, eggs, fish, peanuts, sesame seeds, shellfish, tree nuts, or pork and if it’s vegan or gluten friendly.

Sarah Lieber ’26 is a fan of the online menu and finds herself using it frequently.

“It’s so fun to check the menu. It’s nice to see the weekly staples, but also how Commons changes it up!” Lieber said. 

If you’re not into checking the online menu, never fear: every Commons dish has a labeled placard that includes common allergens and dietary restrictions. There’s also the vegan bar — which, because of the nature of veganism, is friendly for vegetarian, kosher, and halal students too.

Collegiate athletes may need to manage their diet more strictly than the average student, and may face additional challenges or uncertainties when moving to a completely new food environment. If that sounds like you, never fear: in addition to support from sports medicine staff, which you should ask your athletic coach about accessing, Bates employs a dietician who can support you. Thats Josh Palomera, MS, RD, LDN, CSN, who can be reached at [email protected] or (207) 786-6198.

If you are struggling with an eating disorder or disordered eating, on-campus mental health support is available to students for free through Bates’s Counseling and Psychological Servies (CAPS). CAPS even has a psychologist, Wendy Kjeldgaard, who specializes in the treatment of eating disorders and has previously served on the board of the Eating Disorders Association of Maine. Additionally, there is a campus nutritionist available Tuesdays through Thursdays. You can be referred to by a member of CAPS — or you can arrange a meeting on your own by emailing [email protected] or calling (207) 786-6198.

According to the National Institute of Health, eating disorders typically impact 13.5% of college-aged women and 3.6% college-aged men. 

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Lucy Green, Managing Sports Editor
Lucy is a sophomore from Southern California, majoring in Sociology with a Law and Society concentration. In her free time, Lucy enjoys going to the beach with her friends, running, and journaling. Previously, Lucy was a staff writer for The Student in her first year.

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