Vital Signs: How to create healthier eating habits while living on campus

By Victoria Giardina
Columnist

Salad is a popular meal for students looking to improve health (Flickr).

We’ve all been there — frantically rushing from class to a club meeting, always telling ourselves that we will grab a bite to eat once everything from the to-do list is completed. But with these simple tips, you will take on your diet more mindfully and feel good at the same time.

Diversify Your Plate

With long lines at the dining hall, it’s easy to grow impatient and want to stack your plate with the first thing you see. While this may be a quick option, it may not be the most beneficial. Try going to the grill to pick up a piece of grilled chicken. Then, go to the vegetarian bar to pair your poultry with a side of brown rice. Finally, top off your meal with fresh veggies from the salad bar and, with a few more minutes of effort, you’ve just crafted a balanced meal.

Plan Out Your Mornings in Advance

If you’re a snoozer and set your alarm 10 minutes before class, then you may not reap the benefits of the most important meal of the day. Instead of grabbing a not-so-healthy muffin from one of the cafés on campus, try waking up a little bit earlier to dig into a healthy plate of eggs or avocado toast with a side of fruit. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, not only are fruits refreshing, but most of them are low in fat, sodium and calories.

Prep Your Meal During Spare Time

We may not all have the time to brainstorm a nutritionist-approved checklist, but planning simple meals that couple nicely with your weekly schedule is a must. Save the grab-and-go fried foods for a day packed with classes and, when you have a day off, make the time to feed your body with vitamins and nutrients. This will keep you on track for a healthier lifestyle while on campus.

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