Keeping the 'freshman 15' off at any age - FOX 26 News | MyFoxHouston

Keeping the 'freshman 15' off at any age

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HOUSTON (FOX 26) -

Whether carrying a tray in a dormitory dining hall or at a favorite restaurant, the same nutrition rules apply.

FOX 26 News spoke with registered dietitian Carol Lapin about the best foods to carry on the go, how to stock the pantry and fridge with items that will go the extra mile and recipes the children will love.

Good Nutrition and Fitness in College

Making the move from home life to living on campus is a major transition for most college freshman. The student is faced with sudden changes that often results in undesirable eating and fitness practices and increased body weight. The average amount of weight gained during the freshman year of college is seven pounds; rather than the 15 pounds reported in the popular press.¹ Regardless of body weight, the average college student consumes too much fat and not enough fruits and vegetables and many will go on to join the over 66% of our population that is obese.

The list of topics and practical suggestions below can result in positive health outcomes for the college student.

Navigating the Dining Halls

- For breakfast, some good choices include high fiber cereals, whole grain breads, poached eggs, non-fat dairy from yogurt  (Greek has higher protein, less sugar) or milk and fruit.

- Use the proper plate division rule for lunch and dinner. Make ½ the plate non-starchy vegetables and or fruit, ¼ a protein food, and ¼ a starchy vegetable or whole grain.

- Make a substantial meal high in nutrients but low in calories by starting at the salad bar. Add corn, beans, cheese, and other vegetables to Romaine lettuce and spinach.

Make Fitness Part of the Campus Life

Once the class schedule is establish it is important to acquire a regular fitness routine.

- Walk or bike to class.

- Play intramurals.

- Take a fitness class for a course.

- Join hiking, dancing, or rock climbing school recreational clubs.

- Use the school workout facility.

Stock the Dorm Room

Portable cooking appliances may aid in meeting good nutrition goals. A small refrigerator, a toaster oven, and a microwave can help create quick, healthy meals and snacks. Be sure and check the dorm rules for using appliances before moving in.

Groceries to Include for Dry Storage

Make sure foods are kept well wrapped or in plastic containers to keep freshness in and insects out.

- whole grain bread for sandwiches or toast

- Whole grain cereals, low in sugar

- whole wheat or whole corn tortillas for tacos or tostados

- whole grain Flat Outs for making small pizzas or wraps

- whole grain crackers

- potatoes for the microwave

- low-fat microwave popcorn

- nuts, raw or dry roasted.  Wonderful and Everybody's Nut are pistachio nuts sold in the shell which aids in portion control. Thirty nuts are just 100 calories.

- seeds like pumpkin or sesame (use portion control)

- peanut butter (use portion control and check the label to make sure there are no hydrogenated fats)

- Organics Brown Rice is pre-cooked, stores on the shelf, and heats in the microwave in 90 seconds.

- Tuna stored in water

- Marinara sauce

- canned black beans and other favorite legumes

- broth based soups

- low-fat puddings

- apples, oranges, and bananas

Groceries to include for the mini Refrigerator

- ready-made salads

- raw cut up vegetables

- salad Spritzers

- low-fat yogurts

- low-fat cheese

- fresh turkey breast from the store deli

- two water bottles, one to take with you and one to keep cold

- fresh fruit

- light spreads

Groceries to include in the freezer

- Birds Eye Microwaveable Frozen Vegetables, no sauce

- 100-calorie ice cream bars or frozen fruit bars

Make fitness part of campus life

Once the class schedule is establish it is important to acquire a regular fitness routine.

- Walk or bike to class.

- Play intramurals.

- Take a fitness class for a course.

- Join hiking, dancing, or rock climbing school recreational clubs.

- Use the school workout facility.

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