Beating the Freshman Fifteen

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 The Freshman Fifteen is a concept that refers to college students on their own for the first time making decisions that can negatively affect their health. The stereotype (or statistic since that's often the case) is that first year students will eat mostly junk food and gain an average of fifteen pounds if they don't remain active. Depending on the size of your campus and the menu of your dining hall, it can actually be fairly easy to get both exercise and a balanced diet.

The first thing you can do is take a health and wellness course during your first semester when you are still settling into a routine. Your professor can teach you about nutrition and even stop by the dining hall to see if it meets the standards you learn about in class. Try to cut down on soda and fountain drinks other than milk or juice. If joining a gym is not in your budget, you can take a walk around campus every once in a while or take the stairs instead of the elevator. By doing so, you can explore your new surroundings and meet people along the way. Whether you focus on your nutrition or your exercise, however, it is ultimately up to you and your inner strength to follow through with your choices. 

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