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5​​ Tips to Stay on Track with Healthy Eating in College

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The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

We all know that once you transition to the college atmosphere everything from your academics, daily routine, and friend environment changes. Being intentional with the foods we consume is super important, yet it lacks the concern of many students. As one becomes more independent, it is vital for that individual to be mindful of what they choose to eat. In college, we have so many food chains and meals available to us in the dining hall or through on-campus restaurants. Fried foods and a good variety of desserts are at our full disposal. It is easy to eat whatever and whenever we feel like it. So, to help us stay on track, here are some tips to help hold ourselves accountable when it comes to food.

  1. Feed Your Body What It Needs

Now let’s be honest, every college campus does not have a gourmet plate ready with a silver tin on top. It is up to us to choose what goes onto our plate and then into our bodies. As a student, it is common for us to stress eat. With this, it is important to understand what our body is telling us. Are you feeling dehydrated? Do you feel tired even though you did get 7 hours of sleep last night? Oftentimes feeling hungrier just means we are really just thirsty. Try fruit instead of an energy bar the next time you find yourself nodding away in your class lecture.

  1. Go for the Whole!

At my university, one of the first things you see when you walk into the dining hall is the salad bar. This usually contains vegan and vegetarian options for a build-your-own salad with some warm options as well. This could be black beans, quinoa, chickpea curry, or even vegan spaghetti and meatballs. Eating healthier doesn’t have to be a chore, it is the choice of food we chose to go for that matters.

  1. Treat Yourself

I know we are in college and want to enjoy everything we can including the delicious meals we don’t have to cook ourselves. But treating in moderation is better than overindulging in food that we will eventually get tired of and then feel like we are out of options. Reward yourself or stick to a healthier alternative when it comes to sweets or desserts. You never know… maybe you’ll end up liking the vegan oat milk ice cream better than your original go-to flavor.

  1. Be Active!

It is more than just what we eat that keeps us vibrant and energized. Being intentional with what we do to keep our bodies moving is also vital to what we crave and how we choose to fuel our bodies. Going to the gym is one option, but so is going for a run, doing yoga, taking a bike ride, or even walking to class instead of taking your electric scooter (if you have one lol). Our bodies are desperate for movement nowadays since technology makes everything so convenient for us. So do your body a favor and move! Your mind, muscles, and appetite will thank you later. *wink

  1. Do What You Can

The main takeaway from this entire post is to do what you can. Going to college is expensive as it is and we don’t need to break the bank more by spending money on groceries every day. If we stay focused and mindful of what we choose to do with our bodies and intentional about the way we treat them, we will find ourselves much more awake in the matter of enjoying our time here together.

Remember that it is possible. You can do anything you set your mind to. It was never meant to be easy but the reward will be worth it. Go for the gold, your time is here now.