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How to Eat Healthy As a Student

written by: Finn Orfano • edited by: Diana Cooper • updated: 10/7/2010

Being a student doesn’t have to mean eating take-out every day. There are ways to study and eat well too…it just helps if you know how to combine the two.

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    Sticky Eating Habits

    Let’s face it – as a student living in an apartment or a dorm, you aren’t very likely to whip up five course meals every night. Still, there’s little reason why you can’t shop with a healthy body, mind, and heart in mind.

    In a recent study conducted by University of Indiana researchers, it was discovered that college students just don’t think that nutrition is all that important. While students will jump at the chance to take part in some physical activity, eating well simply isn’t a big concern.

    The problem is that the habits you develop while in college tend to follow you throughout the rest of your life. So, if you rely upon junk food during your college years, you will be more likely to eat badly during your adult years. This is precisely why eating well during college is as important as developing a healthy exercise routine.

    For most students learning how to eat healthy is a matter of trying to find quick foods that require very little preparation. The good news is that there are foods out there that take very little time to prepare, but they happen to be good for you as well.

    Now comes the hard part – what foods should you look for?

    Aside from Fruits and Veggies

    You probably already know that you should eat lots of fruits and vegetables. But, let’s be realistic here…most college students aren’t about to shop at the local fruit market every week. While it is recommended that you don’t grab those packaged foods right away, there are some ways to eat easy-to-prepare foods that are still good for you.

    The trick is to read the ingredient labels on the back of those packaged foods. Look for foods that don’t include a long list of chemicals, and try to find foods that look wholesome. Of course, being a college student you are more likely to grab those tasty foods than anything else, but try to balance it out a bit.

    The more that you learn about what foods are good for you (and what foods should be left on the shelf), the more that you can take those healthy eating habits with you as you grow older. The foods that you choose now may not seem that important, but they will eventually impact the rest of your life.

    Cheese is one alternative to fruits and veggies that you can grab on the go. One hundred percent cheese sticks and snacks are a great sources of calcium and Vitamin D. Another appealing option are rice cakes smothered in peanut butter. Or, you can always opt for healthy snack bars/granola bars -- just remember to read those labels!

    Remember, foods that don’t contain a lot of chemicals are made from real food products. Lots of fruits and veggies are the best choices. When it comes to putting food into your body, select the foods that won’t harm you in the long run.