Each Friday I compile a list that highlights five things you probably missed in the news that week and why you should care about them.
Here’s your list for the week of Aug. 15:
1. Sysco can keep hospital contract secret, court rules
An appeals court in Iowa has ruled that Sysco can keep its foodservice contract with the University of Iowa Hospitals secret. This overturned an earlier ruling that would have required the distribution company to provide the contract. The appeals court, however, found that the information contained trade secrets and that Sysco did not have to release the full contract. The issue was brought to a head two years ago when a local newspaper requested them. Sysco argued that releasing the contract would provide information that would help competitors undercut their prices.
2. Labeling on hospital sandwich causes social media stir
For many in the general public, hospital food is the butt of a joke. Many hospitals are doing great work to combat that sentiment. One hospital’s labeling system in the UK, however, didn’t do itself any favors. A patient recently posted a photo of his meal, which was labeled “Patient Sandwich.” While I’m sure those in the hospital’s foodservice program didn’t find any reason for concern with this labeling tactic, the patient and others on social media took it in the wrong way. The patient had this to say about his sandwich on social media: “I always wondered what they did with the left over (sic) ‘body parts’ following surgery.” Another post commented, “Its (sic) a patient sandwich because they keep it hanging around for a long time.”
Read more: NHS hits new lows in hospital lunch
3. Breakfast in the classroom program rolled back following teacher complaints
Jefferson County Schools in Dandridge, Tenn., has rolled back its breakfast in the classroom (BIC) program. Several schools implemented BIC, but some parents and teachers expressed concern over the program, according to the Standard Banner. It isn’t clear whether those who expressed concern were in schools where BIC had been implemented. Some of the complaints were that BIC would encroach on teaching time and the risk for exposure to food allergies. The school board decided to instead offer a grab-and-go breakfast option. The goal of BIC is to increase breakfast participation, which occurred during Jefferson’s BIC implementation. It will be interesting to see the effect rolling back BIC has on participation moving forward. This isn’t the first time teachers have expressed concern over BIC; however, most love the program following the actual implementation.
4. How food plays a part in the healing process for grieving families
This blog provides a great look into one hospital doctor’s experience with food and dying patients and their families. The author talks about what her hospital called comfort carts, which were brought up to the ICU when a loved one had passed. The food on those comfort carts often went uneaten, according to the doctor, but the mere fact that the food was available was a striking moment for her.
Read more: When a Patient Is Dying, Food Appears
5. 9 better-for-you snack options
As the snacking daypart increases, it’s important to offer customers options that are healthier and more filling to prevent overeating between meals. Time recently wrote about nine options that did both. Those snack items included sauerkraut (fermented foods support microbiotic health), pistachios (they keep hunger at bay while supporting post-meal insulin responses) and popcorn (it's an antioxidant-rich, filling grain).
Read more: 9 Healthy Snacks That Prevent Overeating