One of the best things about college is grabbing some yummy comfort food from the dining hall and cramming for the next exam. Or maybe delighting in a danish and latte while chatting with a new friend. Everyone goes to college to gain some knowledge, but what about an extra 15 or 20 pounds? Whether it’s your first year of college or you’re wrapping up your degree, learn how to beat the bulge at the campus dining hall.
Create a Healthy Mindset
The real reason many diets don’t work is because the dieter isn’t ready or has difficulty breaking bad eating habits. Any diet will work as long as the dieter sticks to it, follows the plan and maintains over time.
For freshmen hitting the dining hall, there can be a lot of temptation. Now is the time to create a healthy frame of mind. Set goals for yourself. Feed your body the nutrition it needs. Consume plenty of fruits, veggies and lean meats. Getting into a healthy mindset will soon become routine and make it easier to keep your weight under control.
Love to meditate or do yoga? Place positive eating thoughts in your head at the start of the day while in a crisp frame of mind. Reiterate healthy eating choices to yourself as cravings arise throughout the day.
Create a Healthy Lifestyle Plan and Stick to It
One way to beat the bulge that freshman year is to find a healthy diet or meal plan and stick to it. Even if it’s just making healthier choices and avoiding sugar and junk food, it’s a good start. Use a food tracking app like MyFitnessPal and SparkPeople to help keep your meal choices in check.
Temptation? Ways to Thwart Disaster
Temptation will always be there, even past that freshman year. Food trucks, vending machines, bake sales — they exist everywhere. Thwart a binge-eating session by keeping healthy snacks on you at all times. Yogurt, air-popped popcorn, or an apple are healthy treats to tuck into that backpack.
Stick to three meals a day, and don’t skip breakfast. Drink at least eight 8-ounces of water. This will help keep you full and combat cravings when they strike.
It’s a given that there’s not a lot of free time in college, especially for something like meal planning. But it can really help beat the freshman bulge. Spend some time to plan healthy meals for the week. Get some containers and hit a healthy grocery store like Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s. Having meals prepped and ready to go saves time and money and keeps your weight in check.
It’s normal to indulge on some lasagna and breadsticks followed up with some tiramisu for dessert every once a while. Going overboard with junk food is the easiest way to pack on the pounds. Get as much physical exercise as possible and keep a positive, healthy lifestyle. The results will speak for themselves.