Paul Quinn College, located in Dallas, Texas, has announced that it has decided to ban pork from its campus dining facilities. In making the announcement, Michael Sorrell, president of the college, said, "Eating pork can lead to high blood pressure, high cholesterol, cancer, sodium retention and heart problems, not to mention weight gain and obesity. Therefore, as a part of our continued effort to improve the lives and health of our students, Paul Quinn College and its food service partner Perkins Management have collaborated to create a pork-free cafeteria."

According to USA Today, the pork ban is the latest in a series of steps to create healthier dining options at the college, which has a large number of low-income minority students. Previously, the school had reduced the number of fast food, pork and sweet food options, adding salad options instead. The school lost its football program several years ago, and the field was converted into an organic garden.

"We told our students that we're going to promote healthy living. We told them that we wanted them to have long, productive and healthy lives," Sorrell said. "Now, if one or two people don't like that…. then they aren't being true to the institutional ethos."

Ceci Snyder, a registered dietician and spokeswoman for the National Pork Board, disputed Sorrell's claims regarding the health risks of consuming pork. "It's just not based in fact at all," she said, noting that pork tenderloin has the same amount of fat as a skinless chicken breast, and chops, which come from the loin, contain six grams or fewer of fat.

"You can cook any meat incorrectly and add fat and salt," Snyder said. Of Paul Quinn's pork ban, she added, "We're for sure surprised - I've never seen anything like that before."

Source: USA Today