Eat this not that: Dining healthy on your campus

By Brittany Schenke

Columnist

Let them eat cake. But with spring break around the corner and summer lurking in the shadows, that probably isn’t the best idea. But who says you can’t enjoy food while also being health conscious? To prove that you can, I went around campus and found some healthy alternatives to those greasy, fatty classics we all love to eat.

It’s cliché, but breakfast is the most important meal of the day. If you’re looking to drop weight, a healthy breakfast is necessary to start up your metabolism. So don’t skip out, but watch what you’re choosing. High protein is important, so when you’re on the run choose a Chobani yogurt over your tasty key lime Yoplait. Chobani, although a few extra calories, has more protein in it and will keep you going longer. Also, stay away from those sugary cereals, like Apple Jacks and Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Instead, go for Gorilla Munch or Special K (found at the C-Store).

If you’re at the café, you’re also probably going to get a drink. Plain coffee is always the best option. If you want something flavored, stick to a cappuccino rather than a latte; there is less sugar in a cappuccino. If you’re getting a latte, go skinny (sugar-free flavor and skim milk). But the best option is getting a tea (chai latte does not count!). Tea is not only delicious, but it offers the benefits of antioxidants and helps in weight loss.

If you choose to get lunch at the Stud, go grilled instead of fried. Pick up a pre-packaged salad with grilled chicken instead of making a salad with chopped-up chicken fingers. And if you’re getting a salad, be careful of how much cheese there is! Cheese is high calorie, so only have a little. Also, be conscious of the dressing you choose. Most of the calories you’ll consume when eating a salad are in the dressing. The best option is oil and vinegar. If you want to have your honey mustard or ranch, keep it on the side and drip frugally.

Other than salad, choose the deli line over the grill. Instead of chicken fingers, get a turkey sandwich with lettuce, tomato, and a little mustard. Or, instead of getting a PB&J, try peanut butter, whole wheat toast and a few banana slices.

Next, let’s tackle the Eick Atrium. There are plenty of healthy secrets hidden in Eickhoff that won’t change up your diet too drastically. One of my favorites is getting a grilled cheese at the deli instead of waiting on line at the grill. At the deli, ask for whole wheat bread and whatever type of cheese you like toasted. It is the perfect grilled cheese, minus the thick bread and butter. Another killer is the pasta station. Alfredo sauce is extremely high cal, so if you can’t live without it, cut it with red sauce. And always go for the whole wheat pasta option. If you’re over at the wok, pile on the veggies. But instead of getting the fried rice, go for the brown rice instead.

But what if you’re at the Rat for dinner? Getting one of their new specialty burgers once every so often as a treat is fine, but choose to get the veggie or the turkey burger instead. To cut out carbs, you could even lose the top of the bun and use a piece of lettuce instead. Also, try to stick with the grilled chicken instead of the fried. If you want the fried buffalo chicken wrap, try a grilled chicken sandwich instead and ask for buffalo sauce on the side.