College is hard. From balancing classes, to friends, to working out, to clubs, it sometimes feels like eating healthy is just another thing you have to add into your day. After expressing these frustrations to my mom (who also happens to be a nutritionist and registered dietitian), we came up with a plan to maximize both health and flavor.
Most college dining halls have an omelette bar. Hop in line and order a two-egg scramble with some veggies and put a piece of whole wheat toast on the side. Eggs are a great source of protein and a great choice to keep you both full and energized for the whole morning.
#SpoonTip: If you don’t have time for eggs, don’t skip breakfast. Instead, make a piece of whole wheat or whole grain toast with any type of seed or nut butter to keep you filled until lunch.
Though the obvious and expected choice might seem like a salad, often salads are full of sugary dried fruit and caloric dressings. Also, salad bars sometimes lack flavor and fresh and vibrant ingredients and end up leaving you as hungry as when you started. Instead, go for a plate of protein and vegetables — grilled chicken is lean, filling, and can be seasoned to the max.
The time between classes and the library is a dangerous one. Grab a handful of nuts or a piece of sharp cheddar cheese to tide you over until dinner. Make sure that your snack is little enough to still be considered a snack, but substantial enough to give you some time so you’re not biting off the table while waiting for your friends at dinner.
Here’s where the beloved salad can come in. Pair a side salad of lettuce and some veggies with a piece of meat, fish, or tofu. Add some rice or another grain, like quinoa, to complete your meal with a healthy but satisfying way to feel full without going up for seconds and coming back to the table with a bowl of pasta or piece of pizza.
#SpoonTip: Don’t feel like you have to miss dessert. Get a spoonful of ice cream and a piece of fruit to fulfill that craving.
Late Night Snack
Late night snacks are often a college student’s kryptonite. Whether you’re coming back from a late night of partying or a late night of studying, sometimes you just NEED a snack. So, stock up on low-cal snacks like rice cakes, dark chocolate, seaweed snacks, or Pirate Booty.