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Here’s How to Eat Healthy With Your Meal Plan

College is all about choices. What classes to take, which professors to avoid and exactly how long to put off homework. As seniors in high school, you may have felt as if you were grown up but let’s be honest, you still had to ask permission to use the restroom. 

This new found freedom, while refreshing, comes with certain responsibilities. One of which is your personal health. There’s a reason that your parents didn’t cook chicken nuggets for dinner every night. It won’t take long for you to realize that chicken nuggets, while crispy and delicious, are not exactly all you need for a balanced diet.  

Of course it’s hard to make good choices when you are bombarded with Rob’s fries, The Market’s ice cream sundae bar, and endless Chick Fil a chicken sandwiches. These choices may leave you feeling sluggish, irritable and could even result in the dreaded freshman 15. There is hope! Akron’s campus is full of tasty, healthy food if you know where to go and what to order.

Rob’s cafe is an infamous freshmen stomping ground. Despite the wide range of choices, first-years typically fill up their plates with the ‘3 Ps:’ pizza, pasta and potatoes. Better choices at Rob’s are not available exclusively at the salad bar (let’s face it, a salad doesn’t always cut it for a meal). The international grill serves delicious and healthy food from all over the world. From stir fry to Chinese crepes, this is always a good option to stay healthy and expand your palate. 

Meat is not necessarily bad for you, but the amount eaten in the American diet can have serious long term health effects. If you’d like to cut back on meat consumption, try out the vegan section! This section includes dishes like vegetarian sloppy joes or cauliflower wings. Another tip for navigating Rob’s is to grab a side salad or a bowl of fruit with each meal. Even if you decide to eat pizza one night, a serving of fruits and veggies is always beneficial. 

The Market is a great place to grab food before hanging out with friends in the Student Union. For breakfast, try out a bagel with egg from Einstein Bros. The combination of carbs and protein will give you plenty of energy for your first class and if you are coveting your dining dollars don’t worry—it’s for a swipe! For lunch, pick up some sushi (made fresh every day) or a grilled chicken sandwich from the grill.

Freshen’s is full of great choices. Load up a rice bowl with veggies and get your sauce on the side (it helps you only eat as much as you need and cuts back on fat and calories) or try out a delicious crepe. Be aware, however, that just because the food comes from a store that promotes healthy eating doesn’t necessarily make it healthy. The cheesecake and strawberry nutella crepes make a great dessert but are loaded with sugars that can zap your energy and leave you snoozin’ in your 8:45.

With an abundance of choices on campus, it can be easy to lose track of your health. With a little effort you can easily stay healthy while still enjoying a variety of good foods—one swipe at a time!

 

Sophie is a Senior education major at the University of Akron. She is passionate about animal, women's, and lgbtq+ rights. She has lived in Akron her whole life and one day wants to teach middle school somewhere warm. In her free time she likes to listen to rock music, workout and drink coffee
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