5 Simple Ways to Eat Healthy in College

By Devon DeGroat

Trying to eat healthy can be super challenging as a college student. With all the hustle and bustle of school we sometimes forget how important it is to eat well and before you know it you’re sucked into a black hole of unhealthy eating that’s almost impossible to get out of. Here are five simple ways to eat healthy and keep yourself off the path of no return.

Check out the dietitian office at the dining hall

Many campuses across the country have registered dietitians on hand at the dining halls. These dietitians are trained to provide you with healthy options on campus and help you selecting menu items that are good for you. Unfortunately, “many students are not aware of this super beneficial service,” says Marie Murphy, the registered dietitian at SUNY New Paltz. “It is really helpful if you are looking to watch what you’re eating.” All it takes is a simple walk to the office and you can be eating healthier the very same day! Who knows?

 Set a routine and keep it

Being busy with class, studying and our social lives sometimes does not allow us to follow a strict eating schedule, but when it comes to eating healthy, especially at school, you should want this to be a priority. After consulting with the dietitian and finding some healthy options, pick a set time throughout the day to eat breakfast, lunch and dinner consisting of these food items. “Eating healthy is a lot easier to accomplish when you pre-plan your meals,” says Dabryan Munoz, a personal trainer and New Paltz student. It’s kind of like a class schedule for your body.

Stock up in your dorm

Another simple way to eat healthy at school is to go to the local health food store, buy your favorite healthy snacks and keep them on hand in your room. “Although the mini-fridge the school gives you isn’t the biggest, you can surprisingly fit a lot of stuff in there,” says Munoz, “The convenience of not having to leave your room is nice and the food is even better than the dining halls.” Some dorms even have small kitchen units which students can use to make their own food. If you’re lucky enough to live in one of these dorms, then there is no reason that you shouldn’t be cooking your own healthy meals!

Start making healthy choices

CAMP FOSTER, OKINAWA, Japan – Basic nutrition is made up of the five food groups in a plate template that Marines can follow to maintain a healthy diet. Nutrition is providing the body with food for proper health and growth. Without proper nutrition a person’s health can be affected in many physical ways such as muscle break down and slow reaction times. (U.S. Marine Corps illustration by Lance Cpl. Christopher Madero)

Sure, those cookies and ice cream look delicious after a nice meal, but are they necessary? Victoria Engel, a physician in Kingston, believes they aren’t. “Along with getting in a routine with healthy eating, falling out of a routine with unhealthy eating is just as important,” Engel says.

Try new things

We often hold ourselves back from branching out and exploring new things, but you’re in college and that is the best time to try things out. The dining hall has asparagus tonight and you’ve never had it? Try it. You never know what delicious, healthy food you may like and may have been missing out on.

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