Residence Hall Living and How to Eat Healthy
Just When You Thought It Was Impossible
Whether you are rushing around between classes or simply studying for an exam, it is best to plan ahead about something you might snack on. By planning ahead, you can make healthy choices MOST OF THE TIME, and then splurge with other choices during a special occasion (i.e. after you have taken that exam or finished a long essay). Balance activity with snacking.
First, in the residence hall, you must consider ahead of time what you will use for food storage. If you have access to a small fridge, microwave, or just simple containers with lids, you can make healthy foods readily available. Or if you choose not to store foods in your room, seek healthy foods on the go!
If you have access to a mini-refrigerator, stock it with lowfat milk (skim, 1%), non-dairy milk (soy or rice milk if preferred), small portions of lowfat yogurt, string cheese, and shredded parmesan. Otherwise, rely on the residence hall cafeteria to supply products which require refrigeration.
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With refrigeration, you can store small portions of lean deli meat (turkey, chicken, or ham), or ready-to-eat bags of chicken breast, etc. If not, store natural, creamy peanut butter, small portions of nuts and peanuts and canned beans or bean soup, if preferred. At the cafeteria, alternate your choice of protein-based meals by choosing burgers, pizza, and other high-fat items occasionally. Don’t settle into a “rut” of making poor choices most of the time, when eating healthy is the exception.
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Unless you plan to combine your groceries with a roommate, it is best to find small loaves of whole grain, 100% whole wheat breads, and plan to use them daily to avoid staling or mold.. Also, consider having small bagels, breadsticks, and English muffins readily available. Add whole grains crackers such as Wheat Thins, Triscuits, and Fig Newtons. Finally, small boxes of whole-grain cereals (Shredded Wheat, Cheerios, Bran Flakes) can be great for breakfast or snacking!
For more details, go to www.kelloggnutrition.com
The residence hall cafeteria will have an ample supply of ready-to-eat vegetables available, but if you prefer, stock a small supply of baby carrots, cucumbers, green and red peppers, and tomatoes for easy and quick snacking. Find lowfat dressing packets for dipping your veggies. Purchase produce at the beginning of the week when you know it will get used before the weekend.
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FRUIT and FRUIT JUICE
Again, most fruits can be readily available in the cafeteria, but if you prefer, stock a small supply of bananas, apples, oranges, and grapes in your room. Wash them thoroughly and make them readily available in a basket, easy for grabbing on your way out the door and upon returning to study. Always choose 100% fruit juice – especially to replace soda pop!
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Again, if you prefer to eat in the cafeteria or on the go most often, use the following tips to help move you toward a healthy lifestyle…
First and most important, always watch your portion sizes: 1 slice of bread is a serving, 2-3 ounces of meat is a serving, 1 medium hand fruit is a serving, ˝ cup cooked cereal, rice, pasta, or cooked veggies is a serving, 1 cup of lettuce or raw vegetables is a serving, a 4-6 inch tortilla, pancake, waffle, or pita is a serving. Choose with portion size in mind and then balance and moderate your choices together in an overall day.
- For breakfast, choose pancakes with fruit, waffles, French toast (lite syrup) and simple 1-2 egg omelettes. Request butter on the side.
- Also, opt of cooked or dry cereal with lowfat milk and sliced fruit.
- Drink an 8-ounce glass of milk and a 4-8 ounce fruit juice (100%) rather than skipping breakfast. The protein and carbs fuel you!
- Choose English muffins, wheat toast, whole grain bagels – use jelly or applesauce for spread rather than margarine or butter. Most of the time, avoid biscuits, croissants, pastries, and doughnuts.
- For lunch, order a sandwich with turkey or chicken instead of high-fat meats like bologna, salami, or pastrami. Load them with veggies!
- Look for potatoes topped with vegetables or salsa, salads with grilled chicken, three-bean salads – choose olive oil/vinegar as able.
- For dinner, start with vegetable-based soups, split pea, tomato, minestrone, chicken with rice, and those with lean meats. With your salad, limit cheese, bacon bits, full-fat dressing (or include on the side). Choose unbuttered rolls and lean meat (chicken, fish, turkey) which is grilled, broiled, baked or blackened. Limit breading and deep-fried choice MOST OF THE TIME.
Go ahead and track what you eat using the nutrient analysis program at www.fitday.com.
For a review of the daily menu at the University Food Service on the MSU campus, go to www.montana.edu/wwwufs/menus.
To schedule an appointment with the nutritionist at Student Health Service, contact Linda J. Hogg, RD, LN, dietitian at 994-4380 or e-mail email@example.com.