6 Tips for a Healthy College Diet
Healthy College Diet: College is one of the most exciting times in your life: Meeting new people, learning new things, having new experiences. Sometimes it seems there isn’t even enough time to sleep!
It’s a fact that many students struggle with their diet when they are at college. And when we say diet, it’s not just about keeping down weight; it’s about getting all those important vitamins and nutrients which are not just good for your body but will help facilitate better learning and even mental health.
A lot of college students fail to look after themselves properly for any number of reasons. One of those is, of course, because it could be the first time that they have lived away from home, and they may never have even cooked for themselves before. In such situations, microwaves can become your new best friend. Unfortunately, a lot of the food that goes into microwaves is not the nutrient-rich food we are looking for.
Then there may be financial restrictions, and we all know that fast food is often the cheapest too. The last reason diet suffers at college is because students just find that they simply don’t have enough time to concentrate on eating (which means going to the store, and then preparing meals). If food is just something that is got on the go, then again, inevitably, that food will not necessarily be the healthiest.
For all these reasons and more, diet suffers for many students at college. Here are six tips to help you get a better balance in your college diet.
Part of the issue of eating healthy is that it can conceivably require a little more planning because healthy food is sometimes more difficult to get your hands on. Thankfully, the fast-food culture has changed to include healthier options such as salads and Sushi, but it is still a good idea to think ahead in the week to what you will be eating. If you have a little time on the weekend, cook some meals that you can store in the freezer, making them a quick and easy (and healthy) option as the week progresses. It merely requires a little bit of forethought, and…
Do proper grocery shops, or eat in the dinner hall
If you never have food in your dorm, then you are bound to go looking for food when you get hungry. This behavior usually results in unhealthy snacks and fast food dinners. Having a stock of food that you have bought for the week will ensure that you have balanced items which form part of a healthier diet.
“And never, ever, go grocery shopping if you are hungry, because you will either end up munching your way around the store, or buying a load of chips and other such items which can be opened immediately outside. It’s always a bad idea,” warns Tash Rogers, a nutrition blogger at Academized and BigAssignments.
Keep healthy snacks in your dorm room
When studying or hanging out in your room, you will get hungry for a snack from time to time. Again, if you have nothing, you’ll more than likely end up at a vending machine with a packet of chips of some candy. However, if you planned ahead, you will have a ready-to-access store of healthy options such as fruit, nuts, seeds, and other nutrient-rich alternatives. Not only will this help keep the hunger pains at bay, but they will also facilitate better concentration and study.
Never skip breakfast
Kick-start your day with a decent breakfast. College sleeping times can become a little erratic, sure, but make sure you never skip what is famously known as the most important meal of the day. It doesn’t have to be anything big, but a cup of coffee is just not going to suffice.
Cook with friends
As part of fitting in food to your daily routine, make it something worth celebrating and sharing. Have dinner parties with your new college friends where you cook together or take it in turns to host. Have evenings based around specific cuisine (if you have a multi-cultural set of friends, for example, celebrate the different cultures by cooking cuisine from that particular culture). In short, use food and eating for what it should be: a social occasion to be shared with friends. Swap ideas and try new foods together. Most importantly, have fun with it. The occasional pizza night is no problem too!
Go easy on the caffeine and alcohol
It’s college. Coffee can get you through those long study sessions as well as those early classes, especially after you’ve had a late night. And speaking of late nights, that’s another aspect of college that is famous. With so many new friends and possibilities to go to parties and other social events, alcohol is bound to become part of the conversation at different times.
Caffeine and alcohol are not bad for you in moderation. Problems arise when you begin binging (consuming large amounts in one sitting) or relying on them for a kick. Caffeine will crash your energy levels after a while, and you may also have problems sleeping. Instead, try to drink plenty of water in between and limit your coffee intake to two cups a day maximum. If you are feeling tired, eat some fruit or go for a walk in the fresh air, which will help stimulate you.
“As for alcohol, drinking too much is just a bad idea for so many reasons. As well as the physical effects of drinking too much (severe dehydration, bad skin, and liver/kidney issues), alcohol consumed in high and regular quantities can have a detrimental effect on your mental health as it acts as a depressant. The quality of sleep that you get after drinking is not adequate, and you will find it harder to concentrate and retain the information that you need for your studies,” warns Sarah Farrell, an educator at Assignment help in university and Paper Fellows.
Healthy College Diet: Conclusion
As well as the tips mentioned specifically above, remember to get plenty of sleep (but not too much either), drink regularly plentiful amounts of water. And remember to get lots of exercise too, whether it’s walking to and from class, or to participate in college sports. It may be even necessary to take some vitamin supplements from time to time, but always read labels and consult your doctor too.