Healthy College Food
Eating Healthy College Food
Ok, so you got the acceptance letter, you called your new roommate and now what? It's time to look into the food situation. Sure your parents paid for the room and board. That means that you won't starve but do you really want to eat that junk?
Eating Vegetarian can be a healthy alternative to the greasy burgers and meat layered pizza that seem to be a staple in college. The most important thing to keep in mind if you plan to start eating vegetarian is that you keep in mind what you can eat, not what you can't eat.
Photo Credit: Vegan Food Pyramid
by artists John Clark, M.D. & Julie Clarkon on Vegan Food Pyramid
Used by Permission
It is important to include food from each of the groups because:
1. Grains give your brain and muscles energy.
They are a good source of B-vitamins and iron. Try to include grains like rice, potatoes, pasta, and whole grain bread at every meal.
2. Fruits and Vegetables help eyes, hair, and blood and boost your immune system. They are a good source of vitamins A and C, minerals, and fiber. Try having fruits and vegetables like apples, broccoli, pear, carrots, squash, salad 5-7 times per day (2 1/2 cups of veggies and 2 cups of fruit).
3. Milk or Dairy Products help maintain strong bones and teeth. They are a good source of calcium and protein. Try to have a serving of low fat dairy foods like 8 oz milk, 1 oz cheese, 1 cup yogurt, cottage cheese, pudding, or frozen yogurt 3 times a day.
4. Foods high in Protein help build muscles, fight infection, and heal wounds. Try having beans, peanut butter, fish, tofu, or eggs at 2 meals daily.
5. Fats and Oils keep hair and skin soft and give a feeling of fullness. They are a good source of dietary fat. Try to include a little fat like salad dressing, olive oil, guacamole, nuts, or seeds at each meal.
Please note: Many young women don't get enough of all of the vitamins they need every day, even if they eat a balanced diet. Talk with your doctor about taking a multivitamin.
An antioxidant is a molecule capable of slowing or preventing the oxidation of other molecules. Antioxidants can help prevent heart disease and certain cancers, as well as keep your eyes, mind, and immune system sharp.
How many foods do you eat daily that are high in Antioxidants?
Healthy Dorm Room Snacks - What happens if you get hungry while studying at night?
Keep your room stocked with healthy snacks such as:
Energy or protein bars
Popcorn(Air-popped is the healthiest.)
Peanut butter (100% Peanuts)
Whole Grain Crackers
If you have a fridge:
Yogurt cups and smoothies
Water, flavored seltzer waters, or low fat milk
Photo Credit: Healthy Garden Salad with Fresh Vegetables in Bowl
This refrigerator not only holds enough healthy college food to get you through the week but it also doubles as a night stand. This is an important feature since dorm rooms are notoriously small. This refrigerator is just the right height for a lamp and a few books. This is the perfect refrigerator for a college student.
Photo Credit: Spaghetti Squash with Tomato Sauce
by Witchywife on Photobucket, Creative Commons
Spaghetti Squash is very easy to cook in a toaster oven. Cut the squash in half lengthwise. Scoop out the seeds. Add a little water to the hole left by the seeds. Cover it with aluminum foil and bake for about an hour. This should give you time to study for your next class.
The squash is done when you can prick it easily with a fork. Use the fork to scrape the spaghetti strands onto your dish. Pour on some tomato sauce and sprinkle on a little Parmesan cheese and you would never know it's not really pasta.
Photo Credit: Bean Tacos
by bjz0819 on Photobucket, Creative Commons
Flour tortillas (Whole Wheat is best.)
can of beans (Bearitos)
salsa (Green Mountain Gringo Salsa)
lettuce, spinach, or arugula
Bake in the toster oven unitl the cheese is melted and the tortilla is slightly toasted.
What's for dinner?
Are Humans Carnivores? - Eating Healthy Vegan Foods
Let's Chat about Healthy College Food
Check out my Facebook and Go Activism sites
I have a couple other forms of communication. See my facebook group, Viva Vegetarianism
Locavore by Preshrunk
Localvore is a movement that challenges its participants to eat all local foods (local meaning grown or produced within a 100 mile radius.) Writer and professor Bill Mckibben ate local for 7 months while living in Vermont and really brought the message of this national movement home.
Now the question is, why localvore? Well, in a world with quickly diminishing resources it is becoming vital that we try to conserve by eating food that is grown or produced close to home, therefore decreasing cost, time and energy in the transit process from the grower/producer to the stores. Also, buying local keeps dollars spent local and enhances profits for our neighbors who are producing the food. And in this the era of mass production of food by large corporations and factory farms from faraway places, there are many who just feel better knowing where there food has come from.
College Dorm Cookbooks for Eating Healthy
Watch What You Eat
If I haven't convinced you to eat healthy food yet, check out these movies. The amount of fat and calories in a fast food diet is atrocious. The even scarier fact is that often that is what is being served in college cafeterias. Invite some friends over to your dorm, put out a bowl of carrots and watch what you are missing by eating a healthy diet:
Don Anderson (Greg Kinnear) is the Mickey's food restaurant chain's Marketing Director. He is the inventor of the "Big One", the best selling hamburger of Mickey's. An independent research reports the presence of cow's feces in the Big One. So Don is sent to Cody, Colorado, to verify if the slaughterhouse, main supplier of Mickey's, is as efficient as it appears and the production process is regular. During his investigations he discovers the truth behind a simple hamburger; the reality is not like we think it is. Don discovers that the mass production system involves the exploitation of Mexican illegal immigrants. The film also shows how restaurant employees are treated and the expectations of them.
Super Size Me is an Academy Award-nominated 2004 documentary film written, produced, directed by and starring Morgan Spurlock, an American independent filmmaker. Spurlock's film follows a 30-day time period (February 2003) during which he subsists entirely on food and items purchased exclusively from McDonald's, and the film documents this lifestyle's drastic effects on Spurlock's physical and psychological well-being and explores the fast food industry's corporate influence, including how it encourages poor nutrition for its own profit. During the filming, Spurlock dined at McDonald's restaurants three times per day, sampling every item on the chain's menu at least once. Also, if asked to Super Size his meal, he must. He consumed an average of 5,000 kcal (the equivalent of 9.26 Big Macs) per day during the experiment.
Many young women don't get enough of all of the vitamins they need every day, even if they eat a balanced diet. Talk with your doctor about taking a multivitamin.
You probably won't have much space in your dorm so I suggest that you check out the 3 in 1 Breakfast Maker. It is a very versatile kitchen appliance.
Some of the proceeds from this lens go to Oxfam
Help the rest of the world Eat Healthy too!
Oxfam America is a non-profit organization that works to end
global poverty through saving lives, strengthening communities, and
campaigning for change. We are an affiliate of Oxfam International.
Find Scholarships so you have money left to eat healthy college food. Signing up is free and will give me a chance to win another desperately needed scholarship.
This lens is part of a community service project to promote healthy eating in colleges. Please pass it on to any college students that you know and email me with suggestions. Thank you all for all the wonderful responses so far.