Healthy Tips For College Students
As a college student, having enough time and money for healthy eating can often be challenging. When cramming for midterms, writing research papers, and working on projects, the last thing students want to worry about is their diet. Grabbing a candy bar and bag of chips on the way to class seems like an easy, cheap fix when in a hurry. However, this type of high fat, high sugar, and low protein snacking will just lead to further energy depletion and a cycle of unhealthy eating. In order for students to energize their minds and bodies, healthy eating is essential. Fortunately, students do not have to drastically alter their diets to begin living a healthier lifestyle. Start with small steps by adding more nutrients to some college staples. See below for ideas!
- For Mac and Cheese fans, follow package directions and during the last 2-3 minutes of boiling the pasta, add a fresh or frozen veggie to the boiling water. Broccoli or cauliflower is delicious in Mac and Cheese!
- To spice up a Grilled Cheese Sandwich, used whole grain bread, add a slice of tomato, and sprinkle some dried or fresh basil in the middle of the sandwich before grilling. For more protein add lean turkey or chicken.
- Instead of plain Pasta and Marinara Sauce, mix half whole grain pasta and half plain pasta together. Stir a frozen or fresh vegetable in with the sauce. Try cooked carrots or peas!
- Getting tired of Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches? Add thinly sliced apples, bananas, or strawberries to the sandwich along with whole grain bread.
- If Frozen Pizza is a staple in your diet, try topping the pizza with fresh peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms or olives before baking.
- Can’t get enough Ramen Noodles? Look for a reduced sodium version or add less of the spice packet to the boiling water to reduce the sodium content. Add more nutritious ingredients to the soup like peas, carrots, corn or tofu cubes.
- Instead of your usual Hamburger or Cheeseburger, try lean ground beef or turkey burgers. Don’t skimp on the fresh veggie toppings and replace white buns with whole grain buns or sandwich thins.
- For Salad lovers, add a boiled egg, chickpeas, sunflower seeds or almonds to increase your protein intake. Instead of iceberg lettuce, use darker green lettuce like romaine or spinach. Look out for creamy dressing, which usually has a higher fat content. Oil and vinegar based dressings often contain less unhealthy fats.