In this new environment of college, it is so easy for our wallets to empty quickly and the main culprit for that is food. There are restaurants to explore, boba drinks to try, chocolate to eat, and when all of that is so good, it hard to think about the negative consequences of not eating healthy. Obviously it isn’t healthy to eat fried foods every day, or to eat more cookies than actual food but can you resist the temptation in places like the Center for Community where they have racks of cookies, cakes, ice cream, etc.? Can you resist the urge to get chicken nuggets and fries when you “should” be eating a salad? Now I am definitely not a health freak and I, too, find myself reaching for hamburgers rather than salads, or cookies rather than fruit. It is even harder to try to eat healthy when people around you are eating what you want to eat! What if you could be eating healthy but still eat whatever you wanted? Is there a middle ground?
Only having been to college for 2 weeks does not make me an expert but here are three tips I have learned throughout my life to eat healthy. Now when I say healthy I don’t mean eating only vegetables or fruits for the rest of your life or never eating a brownie ever again. My three tips are things you can do to help you stay healthy that you can do in your daily life right now without changing much of your diet.
Eat your veggies like your mom told you to! Obviously there is no need for your entire plate to be vegetables but you need some sort of vegetables or fruits on your plate. Some vegetables are much easier to consume than others like carrots or cucumbers. There are a variety of fruits and vegetables that you could choose from and you could combine your healthy food with a little something to make it better. For example, if you have an apple, eat it with peanut butter to make it more like a dessert. Or if you have carrots eat it with ranch because ranch makes everything better.
Eat the vegetables on your plate first before you consume anything else. So this means you can’t scarf down your steak or fries first no matter how tempting it is! After eating, blood sugar normally rises but by eating vegetables first, it is said to have a lower rise of blood sugar levels rather than eating meats or carbs first. Doesn’t it also make you feel healthier by just eating vegetables first? Like you have your life together?
Chew your meal 30 times every bite – I know it sounds crazy but trust me. By chewing 30 times every bite, you are eating slowly which allows for your brain to feel full faster therefore you don’t eat as much. Studies show that by chewing 30 times every bite, helps to slim down your face because you are working out your jaw muscles (so you can use this as a diet as well!). I admit it is very hard to get used to chewing any food 30 times but it does make me feel full faster, and doesn’t give me the stomach pain or nausea from eating too much.
There are charts and pyramids that can help people to see what kind of foods they should be eating and how much. Below is a pie-chart of what should be on the plate and how much compared to the rest of the foods.
Use this picture to help you try to make your plate the healthiest it can be the next time you are in the C4C! I hope these tips can help to try to make your college diet slightly better and to not gain the Freshman 15! Good luck!