Never eat a low-cal treat

School has been in session for a little more than a month now, and chances are your nutrition and health have fallen to the wayside and homework and essays have taken over. This is a common problem for every university student, but I have a few tips to keep you healthy while you’re stressing over presentations.

This isn’t about making huge changes to your diet, but instead I have a few substitutes that you won’t even notice, and they’ll make you healthier and stronger in the end. Plus, it would be a total bonus if it helped you avoid the dreaded freshman 15.

Swap the white bread for multi-grain. The nutrients and fiber in multi-grain bread will keep you full longer. That way, you won’t feel hungry an hour after lunch and you can save some cash instead of running for a snack after every meal.

Try mustard instead of mayonnaise. The mayonnaise served in the cafeteria or at a restaurant tends to be full of fat, which means tons of calories. For a delicious, low calorie substitute, try some mustard. There’s twice the flavor and half the fat.

Drink Water I said this last column, but I’ll say it again – do you know how many calories there are in a glass of pop, or juice? Depending on the product, there can be over 100 calories. Do you know how many are in water? Zero. And please don’t be fooled by diet pop. Diet pop contains aspartame, which has been proven to add on more weight to those who drink it than those who choose normal pop. Moral of the story? Drink water.

Stop eating after 8 p.m. Drop the fries and keep your hands where I can see them! Having your last meal before 8 p.m. will allow your body to properly digest your food during the night, so you’re able to start the next morning with a good, hearty breakfast. If you’re a late night snacker, you’re probably also skipping breakfast. Those are two sure-fire ways to gain weight, which leads me to my next point:

If you must snack after 8 p.m., choose fruits and veggies. I know it’s unrealistic of me to ask you to stop eating after 8 p.m. Let’s be honest, I used to devour an entire bag of party mix on my own every night. But that led me to gain 40 pounds, and I realized there are more important things than processed foods. So if you must snack, grab a bag of baby carrots. They’re just as convenient as chips, but they pack tons of nutrients that your brain and body need to stay healthy. Plus, they’re low in calories.

Speaking of low in calories, do not buy low calorie processed snacks. There are hundreds of snack foods that are 100 calories or less, claiming they will help you to lose weight. Sadly, these snacks are worse for you than eating the full fat bag of cookies. Because they are low fat, or low calories, it normally means they’re higher in sodium or sugar. Which means you’ll crash and burn after eating it, and be even hungrier an hour later. Want some good, low calorie snacks? Refer to the tip before this one.

For more tips on staying healthy, losing weight, or just some great recipes, check out my blog:

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