College life, both on and off campus, makes eating healthy seem more like an impossible feat than a maintainable lifestyle. When you can’t bring yourself to eat one more Sodexo Special, and are thinking of where else to go, often Chipotle, Nirchi’s Pizza, and China Wok come to mind. But, it doesn’t have to be that way. There are many lesser known healthy restaurants and markets around Downtown Binghamton to help you combat that Freshman 15.

1. Whole in the Wall (43 S. Washington St.)


Photo by Ki Chung

This restaurant has a menu filled with vegan and gluten free options, as well as other yummy foods that are filling and healthy. From veggie stir-fry to Falafel platters, Whole in the Wall has got it covered. And, while you’re there, try some of their world famous pesto.

2. Health Beat (214 Main St.)


Photo courtesy of Michael Coghlan on

Health Beat is a health food market and deli. It offers organic produce, groceries, vitamins, and supplements, as well as an assortment of prepared foods. This is a great spot for students living off campus, who don’t have the time or funds to stock their fridges full of Wegmans’ goods (don’t worry, Wegmans, we still love you).

3. Water Street Brewing Co. (168 Water St.)


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This trendy restaurant and brewery is an awesome getaway for a chill night out. The menu features plenty of salads, burgers, and specials using locally sourced produce and many gluten free and vegan options. Keep this place in mind when the line at Lost Dog Cafe is a little too long.

4. Blend (136 Washington St.)


Photo by Rachel Piorko

Blend is a new smoothie and salad bar started by Binghamton University alum Manny Ndagijimana. The smoothie shop is new to the Binghamton area, only recently opening in September 2015. Not only does Blend provide a new spot for the health-conscious student, but it also supports Ndagijimana’s non-profit organization, NARA Global. His organization “provides health education and emergency relief” to developing countries.

5. Nezuntoz Café (50 Pennsylvania Ave.)


Photo courtesy of Kendall Loh,

Nezuntoz is the hipster bagel, sandwich and coffee shop of your dreams. Tucked away around the corner from Number 5 Restaurant, Nezuntoz is packed full of character. Collegetown Bagels in Ithaca delivers the bagels (the best in all of Upstate New York in my opinion) fresh every morning. While bagels don’t seem like the obvious healthy choice, Nezuntoz also offers soups with no added preservatives and salads and sandwiches with fresh, organic ingredients.