Now everyone knows the stereotype – college kids live on ramen noodles and microwave snacks, and are not concerned about healthy eating. I mean, why should we? We’re young, and this Red Bull is the only thing that’ll keep me up to study.
After finishing my first year, I have realized the sheer importance of food. If I haven’t properly eaten before class, there was no way I was going to pay attention. It was useless.
For example, I had a physics class followed by a linear algebra class. Physics was from 8-10am (which is brutal on its own) but it was immediately followed by my linear class, from 10-11am. A lot of times I’d wake up just in time to rush to class, without breakfast. And let me tell you, it’s already hard to pay attention when you’re half asleep, but when you’re starving? Brutal. I’m sure That’s one of the reasons I struggles through linear algebra.
So we know proper nutrition is the key to success, but how does such a busy student implement this in their daily lives? Here are some tips:
Moral of my story: Eat breakfast. But not necessarily in the dining hall, because that can be pricey. What I did was buy cereal and yogurt, but then take fruit from the dining hall the night before at dinner (so I wouldn’t have to worry about it spoiling). In the morning, get yourself a bowl and but yogurt, cereal and the fruit and have yourself a little parfait.
This worked for me mostly on mellow mornings; I didn’t have class but needed to finish an assignment or meet with a peer. But normally, I am someone that needs a lot of protein in order to feel full. So…
Go grocery shopping AND dining hall shopping. Don’t buy things that you could sweep from the dining hall pretty easily. Things like fruit, cream cheese cups, a bagel or two can all be attained through sining hall shopping. However, you should buy eggs (if you have a kitchen nearby) and make eggs for breakfast a few days a week. Your vegetable toppings can be swept from the dining hall salad bar in a tuberware pretty easily.
Leftovers from dinner. Easiest case: take a tuberware to dinner and put what you didn’t finish in a tuberware for the next morning. Pretty easy, and will take no time in the morning to just take out of the fridge.
Bring snacks EVERYWHERE. This is what you can buy from the grocery store because it’s hard to get from dining halls. Chips, trail mix, popcorn, pretzels, you name it. This is what will help you get through class and stay energized even when the dining halls aren’t open. It’ll also save you money since you won’t be tempted to buy overpriced food from campus stores or vending machines.
Don’t overdo caffeine. I love coffee; the taste, the effect, the social atmosphere. But it’s very easy in college to drink too much caffeine. If you keep up your habits, caffeine will lose it’s effect on you and you’ll have to drink that much more. Instead, fuel yourself through healthy foods and snacks, and drink water. You can have your cup of joe, but don’t have 4 a day, and replace a few with tea instead.
Drink water. It gives you life and a million symptoms of fatigue can be alleviated by simply being hydrated. Enough said.
Hopefully these tips will help you become a more energized and healthy student! And of course, extend this lifestyle to all times of year and all kinds of situations. These are the eating habits of successful individuals everywhere.
In all, respect your body and mind and fuel them well, and you’ll be able to function a lot better.
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