How to Avoid the Freshmen 15

Temptations, temptations, temptations. Fries, pop and juice, desserts, an ice cream machine, and pizza always available at the cafeteria, in addition to the fried foods, frappuccinos, and giant cupcakes offered at the CoalBen; it is no wonder that so many freshmen fall a victim to the freshmen 15. However, I am going to share with you how you can avoid it.

First, let’s consider the healthy options always available in the cafeteria that can often be overlooked. There is always a salad and soup bar, a sub and sandwich section (you pick what you want on your sandwich), a fruit section with apples, oranges, and bananas, a pasta section, and an area that offers the typical home-style dinner: usually vegetables and meat of some sort, as well as a vegan or vegetarian option. These are great areas to get your meal because they address the fruit, veggie, protein, and grain servings that are so important in a well-balanced diet. Drink-wise, there is a large selection to choose from. If you want to avoid excess sugar and calories, however, you should limit the amount pop and juices and stick to milk and water (you should drink about 64 ounces of water a day).

To be clear, though, I’m am not saying to deprive yourself! Let’s be realistic,  we all enjoy some of those foods that are delicious but not all so nutritious. Go ahead and have those fries occasionally or that bowl of ice cream. The key is moderation. It’s making those foods a habit is what will gradually pack on the weight.

Poor eating is not the only cause of the freshmen 15, though. Keep yourself active! We are fortunate to have the newly renovated Rice Center, open 7 days a week,  full of great workout equipment to use at your leisure with no expense to you.  Take advantage of it! If that doesn’t appeal to you, maybe try to get involved in some type of group that will keep your fitness up while doing something you love or are interested in. Some great options are yoga club, zumba, and dance club. I highly recommend this because not only will it help keep you in shape, it will also be a great opportunity to meet new people!


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