So after I see that news I want to share to all the college girls~!!
The Sweet Smell of Freedom
Going off to college means finally being in charge of your life. No one is telling you what to do, when to be home or what to eat. Ah, sweet freedom! The downside is falling prey to late-night pizzas, too many beers and fattening cafeteria food. Elizabeth Somers notes that, "[t]he stress of handling rigorous studies and being away from parents for the first time, in an environment with unlimited access to food, can quickly result in weight gain." The best way to handle these temptations is to have a plan for what you'll do to handle them. The most common diet pitfalls include:
1. Drinking. You already know that binge drinking is a growing problem in college campuses around the country and that it can cause brain damage, memory loss and even death. Drinking can also cause something else: Weight gain. Alcohol doesn't contain fat, but it does contain calories...7 calories per gram as opposed to protein and carbs, both of which contain 4 calories per gram. Add in other high-calorie extras like juice, mixes or sugar and the calories can start to pile one. The average 12 oz. can of beer has about 148 calories. Think about it: Even if you only have one beer a night, that's an extra 1,000 calories a week you're adding to your diet. That means gaining more than a pound a month.
Kicking the Habit. Now, I'm not saying you shouldn't enjoy the occasional drink if you're of age, but be smart about it. You already know to stay away from binge drinking (five or more drinks in a row) and drinking and driving. To avoid unwanted alcohol pounds, try to keep your drinking to a minimum. Have a glass of water for every alcoholic drink you have, which will keep you hydrated and help avoid a late night trek to Krystal for a greasy hamburger. Try not to drink every night. Save it for the weekend and, when you go to a party, avoid the trashcan punch which usually contains Everclear, or some other hard liquor. The more alcohol in a drink, the more calories!
2. Yum...pizza! There's nothing more soothing than digging into a warm, cheesy pizza in the middle of an all-night cram session. The truth is, pizza isn't the worst thing you could choose for a late-night dinner. If you keep the fatty toppings to a minimum and avoid the deep dish extravaganza, you can enjoy the nutritional benefits of pizza: the cheese satisfies your dairy needs, the tomato sauce/veggie toppings satisfy part of your vegetable requirements, and the crust provides nutrients from the bread and grain food group.
Kicking the Habit. Pizza becomes your enemy at 2:00 in the morning after you've already had dinner. Staying up late usually means eating more, and late-night snacks tend to be on the unhealthy side. You're better off planning for late night snacks by eating a little less throughout the day. You'll enjoy your pizza a lot more knowing that you're not adding extra calories to your diet.
3. All You Can Eat! I don't know about you, but the cafeteria at my university provided tons of yummy food and unlimited amounts of it. Oh, the pizza! The pasta! The calzones! How could I resist? I learned the hard way that going back for seconds was quickly adding some bags to my saddle. After a long day of mind-numbing classes, your body will try to trick you into eating something fattening to perk you up.
Kicking the Habit. If you're faced with the same dilemma, this is where your brain should kick in and remind you of a few things: The USDA has a little thing called a Food Guide Pyramid which dictates the healthiest way to get all your nutrients and avoid flab. The new guidelines can be personalized to fit your age, gender and activity level. To make it easy, simply make sure you've got something green on your plate and that your portion of meat is about the size of a deck of cards. Eating things that are grilled or steamed rather than fried or sautéed will also help you avoid extra fat. Eat slowly and savor every bite and you'll find it easier to avoid that second trip down the pasta line. Oh and watch the salad dressing, which can have up to 150 calories per serving!
4. (Yawn) Late nights. In her article, Less Sleep, More Weight, Florence Cardinal suggests that lack of sleep can actually increase appetite. What's more, when you're sleep-deprived you're much more likely to revert to the kinds of food available only through dollar-sucking machines. It's inevitable that you'll experience some late nights, so what can you do to minimize the damage?
Kicking the Habit. Repeat after me: "Failing to plan means planning to fail." That is an awful cliché, I know, but it works. Planning your life so that you get the most snooze time possible means your body will function in peak condition. It helps if you have regular sleeping habits like going to bed and getting up at the same time each day. Florence recommends that you "[s]leep in the same room and bed every night," (ahem, not that you wouldn't...) and that you "[d]on't eat, drink alcohol or smoke for two or three hours before you go to bed." You won't be able to do this every single night, but try for at least the majority of your school week.
5. No Exercise. In high school, you may have been the star of the track team or a pretty decent football player. Now that you're in college, you may find that your daily activities consist of watching your favorite soap opera and rooting through your roommate's grunge pile for a spare bag of CHEE.TOS®. Now is not the time to stop exercising! You don't have to train for a marathon or anything. Just finding ways to move around every day is enough to keep your body from slipping into a pizza-induced coma.
Kicking the Habit. Yes, your life is busy and you have way too much to do, but you can still find time to exercise. Obviously, walking from class to class qualifies, as does running up nine flights of stairs to catch your algebra class. But you need more, my friend. Try a walk or jog around the campus each morning or, better yet, join an aerobics class. You can usually get P.E. credit at the same time you're shaping up. Most schools have some type of fitness facility (usually free to students) and some even offer free personal training. Don't forget, strength training can help raise your metabolism by adding some lean body tissue. If you can't seem to drag your butt to the campus gym, you don't need a lot of equipment to get a great workout. Try these workouts you can do right in your dorm room or apartment with little or no equipment needed:
For more exercise tips, visit my Beginner's Corner and find facts on working out and links to workout ideas.
The trick to enjoying your freshman year is a mixture of planning, mindfulness and enjoyment. It's tempting to go off the deep end, what with all that intoxicating freedom surrounding you. But, what you want to strive for is moderation. Have fun, enjoy your freedom, but make smart choices. It's easier to do this when you surround yourself with like-minded friends. Make friends with people who won't pressure you into having one more drink or one more slab of pie and you'll find avoiding temptation that much easier.