The first step towards a healthy living while attending college is to eat smarter for physical and mental performance. Learning the basic principles of nutrition and what food has will help steer you to eating smarter. Foods contain three basic macro-nutrients: protein, carbohydrates, and fat. Healthy sources of protein are chicken and eggs; healthy sources of carbohydrates are fruits and vegetables; healthy sources of fats are peanut butter and olive oil.
Although campus cafeterias can make it hard to eat smarter with all-you-can-eat options and social eating with friends, students can use their knowledge of basic nutrition to take advantage of eating on campus by filling up their plates with lots of vegetables, choosing those healthier sources of protein, and portion-control on the unlimited slices of pizza. Most college campus cafeterias have low-fat food options, salad bars, and even will take off the bun of a burger if asked. Avoid vending machines on campus as they have nothing but sugar-loaded energy drinks and processed candy or snacks.
Students often study for hours straight, decreasing the time they have to eat so they need quick snack options. One way for students to eat smarter is to shop smarter: students can budget groceries for their dorm rooms by buying in bulk, looking for student discounts, or using coupons. Students can stock up on healthy snacks such as granola bars and fruits to bring with them to the library for those long, study sessions.
College campuses encourage socializing and socializing often encourages eating. Students should not fear unhealthy foods while having fun. Ways that students can deal with socializing are controlling the portions of their favorite food they get, or asking for healthier options when eating out, or simply just ordering a something to drink if you are not hungry. Do not feel pressured to order loaded-fries just because your friend also ordered that. Just be smart about what you choose to eat and you can still enjoy the company of your friends without having to feel left out of the social group.
Another step towards a healthy living for college students is to take advantage of services that their schools have to offer. Almost every college campus has health and wellness centers where they offer services such as gyms, body massages, nutrition specialists, and personal trainers. Students are often guaranteed these services because tuition fees include the cost of those services. Regular exercise is proven to improve health not just physically but also mentally. The stress of assignments, course exams, and graduation can leave your brain drained so being active is important because exercise can lower stress and help students focus on their academies.
One tip that can help students be more active is to set goals. Students can start out by setting short-term goals such as going to the gym twice a week and work towards long-term goals such as creating their own workout and diet plan for the semester. Setting goals is important because you will have something to work towards which will make exercising a lot easier. Students will learn to make smaller improvements for a greater goal which can also help with their academies such as dedicating more time to studying to improve GPA.
Another tip that can help students be more active is to get involved on campus. Although not every student is a college athlete, many colleges offer sport clubs that anyone can join and intramural sport leagues for students only. Going to socialize through activities that involve exercise is a great way for students to be more active without having to force yourself to run five miles. Taking a nutrition class or fitness class can help students meet other people who are interested in healthy living and helping students stay motivated at improving their health while juggling college life.