BY TAYLOR EVANS // FEB. 13, 2014 //

Let’s be real. Eating healthy on a college campus is hard. There are so many temptations, from the ice cream to the snacks to the junk food to the burgers and fries.

On top of that, college students are busy. In addition to our classes and studies, most of us have jobs or take part in some sort of extracurricular activity. Sometimes, good eating takes a back seat to any eating.

PHOTO BY PIETER V MARION
PHOTO BY PIETER V MARION

Your health is important, though. Even if you don’t gain the “freshman 15,” you may start to pack on the pounds at one point or another. Sure, a huge part of eating healthy is looking good. But it’s more important to feel good. Eating well can boost your energy and prevent an array of future health problems.

When it comes to taking care of yourself on campus, there are a few things I have found that work.

1. Stay away from junk food. Yes, it may scream your name late at night, but your mind and self control have to be stronger than your stomach. Some ice cream while watching “The Notebook” won’t kill you—in fact, it will probably comfort you if you’re a girl—but don’t let sugary desserts become a habit.

If you can afford ice cream, you can also buy yogurt. Put down the Doritos and try Pita chips. Back away from the cookies; pick up a piece of fruit.

2. Stay active. As a college athlete, I’m always busy and I love it. Sure, it’s hard getting to the gym sometimes, but anything is better than nothing. Find a “workout buddy,” as it will increase your motivation and it’s always fun to exercise with a friend. You’ll also both look amazing when swimsuit season rolls around.

3. Eat! Avoiding food is simply not good for you. In fact, it’s horrible. When you deprive yourself of the nutrients you need, your body will react negatively, as will your brain. In fact, studies have shown that an inconsistent eating schedule often leads to binge eating, which often leads to consuming a boatload of unhealthy foods (remember point No. 1?).

Most every college has on-campus resources to help you stay on track. Whether it’s someone at the Fitness Center or someone that works in the cafeteria. First and foremost, though, taking care of yourself starts with you.

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