Eating healthy at college can be a tricky maneuver. You’re in a hurry getting to classes, working a part-time job, studying late at night and, of course, keeping up with those hot dates. You’re going to need healthy foods to keep your motor running while keeping your package looking good. Here are five cloak-and-dagger secrets from the underground of healthy college eating to accomplish the mission.
Munchies and Snacks
Whether you’re in between class or having a late study night, you’re bound to get the munchies attack. These munchies attacks come on quick and furious, so you’ll need to be prepared with a healthy snack to fight off the pangs. Before leaving the dining hall, equip yourself with a piece of fruit, such as an apple or banana. Fruits are filled with natural sugar, fiber and vitamins and will quickly satiate you. Keep a stockpile of healthy snacks in your dorm fridge for those late study nights. Include items such as, low-fat yogurts, hummus on whole grain pita breads or low-fat cheese strings. Do not include donuts, Danish or fried snacks like Doritos. These foods are nutritionally empty, high in cholesterol and will pack on the pounds in no time.
Skipping breakfast is like trying to start your car on empty, so don’t do it. It’ll also make you ravenous by lunchtime, and you’ll find yourself chowing down anything within sight. Eating a healthy breakfast will give you energy to start your day and keep you focused in class. While those Belgian waffles with syrup may look enticing in the dining hall, there are plenty of other food choices that are much healthier. Go with a hard-boiled egg and fruit or a whole grain cereal with fruits and nuts. Both are filled with protein and vitamins to get your day off to a good start.
Change your opinion about what you’d like for lunch. We’re all creatures of habit and have gotten into the rut of hamburgers and French fries. Go vegan instead. You’ll be eliminating unnecessary calories, unhealthy fats, nourishing your body and keeping in shape. Head for the salad bar in the dining hall and choose a variety of healthy veggies for your afternoon delight. Put together a smorgasbord of leafy greens, mushrooms, sprouts and grated cheeses on top. If you’re really feeling hungry, add some lean chicken to the mix.
Think lean cuisine when choosing foods for dinner. Your day is coming to an end, and you’ll be burning fewer calories. Fewer calories burned equals more fat tissue. Choose lean steaks, chicken or fish as your main source of protein for dinner. Include a healthy veggie, such as broccoli or carrots. You also need a portion of carbs for energy, so choose a natural grain rice or pasta.
With so much food available in the college dining hall, it’s hard not to over indulge. To avoid this trap, be determined to only fill your plate once and forget that you’re allowed seconds. Try to eat slowly, and you’ll find that you won’t feel the need for a second plate. This will take some discipline at first, but once you establish the habit, it’ll become second nature.
About the Author
- Diet Does Not Mean Hungry: Why You Shouldn’t Give up Your Snacks (cleansebody.org)
- Foods That Make Us Gain Weight (weightlossdietforum.com)