With 80% of those studying in higher education reporting symptoms of stress or anxiety, Square Root of Self is Bidfood’s latest campaign designed to engage with universities in supporting their student’s mental wellbeing.

Named to reflect students getting to the root of their wellbeing and launched off the back of Bidfood’s wider sustainability strategy, the premise of the campaign is around the vital part food plays in overall wellbeing - and it’s not just what you eat, but how and where you eat it.

As part of the campaign, Bidfood has created a guide that provides insight, wellness recipes developed by their chef development team, as well as helpful advice on how community spaces can be laid out to support students on campus.

To ensure the recipes meet the needs of the campaign, Bidfood has partnered with Christine Bailey, a nutritional therapist and chef. Recognising that what we eat and drink affects how we feel, think and behave, the recipes include ingredients that cover four key areas of nutritional support for mental wellbeing and supporting the brain; healthy fats, minerals, vitamins and protein. The importance of gut health is also stressed when considering mental wellness, with naturally gut supporting ingredients also featuring in some of the recipes.

Dish ideas include healthy lunches such as spiced grain salad with a red cabbage kimchi and bang bang salad, as well as a variety of dessert options, such as banana and peanut butter small pots.

Commenting on the campaign, Tim Adams, Corporate Marketing and Sales Director at Bidfood said: “Mental wellness is a topic that we’re seeing increasingly come to the forefront of conversation, particularly with students who are under added pressures of leaving home for the first time, as well as keeping on top of finances and academic pressures.

“I’m extremely proud to see our √Self campaign launch. Bringing our vision to life has enabled us to provide support to students, as well as equip them with the right tools to navigate mental wellness in all elements of student life. From nutrition right through to community support.”

A supporter of the campaign and founder of gut healthy drink No. 1 Living Kombucha, Jonny Wilkinson CBE said: “Bidfood's √Self campaign is a great approach to mental health, using food and diet as a vehicle for transformation. There is a close relationship between what we eat and how we feel, and universities are powerfully positioned to drive this movement forward for their students.”