Everyone knows that eating a balanced diet, exercising, and getting lots of rest are crucial to maintaining good health. However, that can appear to be an impossible job while in college. Frequently, the appeal of sweets, fast food, caffeine, and alcohol outweigh healthy choices when you are in the business of friends or under stress from coursework. Here are a few tips for staying healthy regardless of your college lifestyle.
Eat a variety of nutrient rich foods. Your body really needs more than 40 different nutrients for good health, and there is not one single resource for them. Your daily food selection should include a balance of good carbohydrates, protein, fruits, veggies, and dairy products.
Eat moderate portions. If you keep portion sizes reasonable and moderate, it is simpler to eat what you want and keep a healthy and balanced diet. What’s a moderate part? A medium-sized part of fruit is just one serving. A cup of pasta equates 2 servings and a spoonful of ice cream includes 4 servings.
DO NOT SKIP MEALS. Skipping meals may cause out-of-control hunger and frequently leads to over-indulging. Snacking between regular meals can be helpful if you are pressed for time. Just ensure that you have at least two balanced meals.
DO NOT ELIMINATE SPECIFIC FOODS. Because our bodies need diverse nutrition, it is a bad idea to get rid of all salt, fat, and sugar from our diets, unless advised to do so by a health professional. Choosing healthier options like skim or low-fat dairy can allow you to maintain a balanced diet.
Foods are not good or bad. It is all about portion control!
Drink water! Keep away from cokes and other sugary sodas, which can pack up to 17 teaspoons of sugar per 20oz drink! Sugar is a source of empty calories which can consume important minerals and vitamins in your body. Water helps not only to hydrate, but to assist in blood flow, the elimination of toxins from our bodies, and in the regulation of our body temperatures.
Avoid too much caffeine. Caffeine is a somewhat addictive drug that could impact your ability to sleep and concentrate while also affecting such physiological functions as muscle function and the cleanup of waste products.
Fitness and stress management
- Use the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Take at least 30 minutes of activity daily. If the concept of sweating at the gym for hours on end does not sound appealing to you, then head out for a game of ultimate Frisbee. Or, consider going for a walk or a jog. The main thing is that you get going!
- Keep yourself organized to remove unnecessary and preventable stress.
- Turn off the TV and listen to music.
- Make time each day, even if it is only 15 minutes, for reflection and relaxation.
- Get a lot of sleep.
- Allow a minimum of 30 minutes of quiet relaxing action before bed at night, e.g. reading.
- Resist the urge to use sleeping pills, when under the stress of writing papers, studying, etc..
- Sleep is not a waste of time! It is as important and essential as nutrition and exercise.
Get involved and meet people in a positive environment. Frequently the adjustment to college can be hard, particularly when students are leaving the support system they have known for a lifetime. The most important point to consider is to find something you are interested in and enjoy yourself.