Either entering your first year of college or your fourth, there is always the risk of gaining the “Freshman 15”. Between the stress of classes, a busy schedule, and just the tons of options of food either at the dining hall or off-campus, it is always hard to make sure you don’t gain the extra weight. Of course, you can go to the gym but sometimes you still eat more than you can burn.

There are plenty of ways to maintain or even lose weight while at college despite the temptations of all the food. Here are some great tips to avoid the “Freshman 15”:

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  • An easy way to cut down on calories is to refrain from the breakfast buffet in the dining hall. You don’t need sausage, bacon, eggs, and pancakes every morning. A breakfast like this can run you upwards of 750 calories. For some people, that’s half their days worth of calories in just one meal!
    • If you still want to go to the dining hall, get either eggs and whole wheat toast or Greek yogurt and fruit. Both of these are high in protein and can be at most 300 calories.
  • Grabbing a muffin at the student center can be quick and delicious, but it’s basically a cupcake without frosting. It’s full of sugar and fat.
    • For a different quick breakfast on the go, either buy some yogurt, oatmeal, protein bar, or make a  Naturade Shake. These can all be easy. Here are some great options for a Naturade Shake that can be made the night before. If you live in a dorm and don’t have access to a blender, you can just add the powder and some almond milk together for a great shake without any cleanup!
  • When you’re craving a late-night snack while you’re pulling an all-nighter you might be tempted to order in pizza. With all your stress, you can end up eating a whole pizza and be set back about $15! That is neither good for you nutritionally or financially.
    • An easier alternative is to enjoy microwaveable brown rice or quinoa. Both of these can be easy to heat up, they’re portion controlled, and are very versatile! Heat up some frozen veggies and marinara sauce to mix in with the rice or quinoa. When it comes out of the microwave, toss on a little shredded cheese if you want it to be more like pizza.
  • Dining halls can have some of the unhealthiest foods despite trying to encourage people to eat healthy. Wings can set you back more than your days worth of calories in just one meal alone! Are your sticky hands really worth that?
    • If you are craving wings a simple alternative is to get grilled chicken with the same sauce. Dining halls generally have grilled chicken as a healthy alternative every day. Add BBQ, hot sauce, honey mustard, or any other sauce you’re craving on top of it and you’ll feel like you’re enjoying wings! You can even get carrots and celery from the salad bar.

These are just some simple alternatives to making sure you don’t gain the “Freshman 15” while at college. Making sure your portions are appropriate is a major key. Something could be healthy in one serving but by the time you eat 2 to 3 servings, you can be making that healthy choice a unhealthy one.

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