Tips to Avoid the “Freshmen 15”
As if college freshmen don’t have enough to worry about – making friends, being away from home, intense course work – they have the possibility of gaining the “freshmen 15” hanging over their head. Here are some tips on how to most importantly stay healthy and avoid gaining weight at school.
1. Avoid the Late Night Ordering
Ordering pizza and wings at 1 am a few times a week can feel immediately satisfying, but it will most likely catch up to you. Not only does late night chowing add to the possibility of weight gain, but also it can affect you the next day. As students, it is important to wake up for class feeling refreshed, well rested, and ready to tackle a day of class and studying. But when eating such heavy foods right before bed, it is likely you will wake up feeling groggy and slow.
2. Make Healthier Choices in the Dining Hall
Although there are usually healthier choices available, the fried and greasy foods tend to catch students’ eyes. Not only are there so many options, but also there is an unlimited amount. Nothing is stopping students from getting seconds and thirds. It is important to try your best to eat well-balanced, properly portioned meals. If students aren’t sure how to make healthier choices, there is normally a registered dietitian on campus that offers free nutrition counseling for students.
3. Keep Healthy Snacks in your Dorm Room
College students tend to be very busy and always on the go. If you are a student who seems to be always eating on the go, keep some healthier snacks in your dorm room to make sure you still have control over what you eat. Some great ideas for easily store-able and on the go snacks are yogurt, granola bars, fruit, and nuts.
Many college students have gone their whole life playing sports and then get to school and either don’t have time or don’t have the option any more. Some students won’t go to their school gym because they feel intimidated. It is important to exercise regularly not only to stay healthy, but also to stay alert. Getting into a regular exercise routine will help keep you focused and able to study hard.
5. Drink More Water then Alcohol
It’s no secret that college students like to party. Not only is it important to be careful how much you drink in order to be safe, but it is important to limit alcohol consumption in order to avoid weight gain.
If you gained a few extra pounds at school, be sure to seek out a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN) at school or when you are home visiting your parents. Nutrition counseling with an RDN is often a covered benefit under your insurance plan- take advantage of it!