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I Tried to Eat Healthy at the Dining Hall For a Week — Here’s How it Went

It was the first week of March, and with spring break rapidly approaching, I decided it was time for me to speed up the “bikini bod-ready” process. Ever since coming to college, I tell people all the time that I actually don’t eat more unhealthy foods than I did at home, but the biggest difference is actually that I now eat dessert. Multiple times a day. Every day.

When there are so many tempting desserts in every single dining hall, it’s very difficult to exercise any kind of self-restraint or willpower when it comes to attempting to eat healthily. However, I was determined to give it a solid try and attempt to eat healthy in the Boston University dining halls for one week.

Breakfasts were the easiest meal by FAR! To start off, I should disclaim by saying that I usually have classes that start later in the day, so I don’t usually eat breakfast every day. I invested $2 in Trader Joe’s Everything but the Bagel Seasoning (a complete GAMECHANGER) and brought it with me to the dining hall each morning, got scrambled eggs already prepared, and doused them in the seasoning. I literally got excited to eat this in the morning, because the seasoning makes the eggs taste amazing, and it’s just seeds, so it’s totally healthy! On days I didn’t want to eat eggs, I would get oatmeal from the huge prepared pot, add a tiny bit of milk to make it runnier, and then I topped it with cinnamon and bananas. Those two ingredients pack so much flavor and really liven up the oatmeal.

Lunch was definitely my trickiest meal, because I usually go to Bay State for lunch, and it’s VERY hard for me to resist the freshly made Bay State pasta. So, actually, I didn’t. Usually, I would get one bowl of whatever pasta they had with NO parmesan cheese added on top, and then get another bowl and fill it with the salad that’s right next to the pasta and is so good. I always eat an apple after lunch, so I’d grab two before I sat down: one to eat in the dining hall and one to eat as I walked to my next class.

Dinner is probably my favorite meal of the day because I usually eat with my best friends, and we’ll spend upwards of an hour in the dining hall, just eating and hanging out. This can turn into somewhat of a problem because usually, I keep going up for more food so I have something to eat while we catch up. During my healthy week, I made a deal with myself that I would only get two servings of dinner, and they’d both be big portions that would take me longer to eat. The first round was usually from the gluten-free station, which consists of some type of meat, rice or potato, and a vegetable. The second serving was usually from the station next to gluten-free, which is usually some kind of stew or beef dish, which I add rice to keep me fuller. Of course, the hardest part was not going anywhere near the dessert table! I would grab two apples again, but this time, I would eat them both in the dining hall to keep me busy.

The week went by surprisingly quickly, and by the last day, I found that I didn’t even miss desserts that much. I tried to continue the no-dessert streak as best as I could throughout spring break, and I definitely plan on trying to continue it when I get back to school for the second half of the spring semester!


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Sophie is a freshman from Chicago—the city, NOT the suburbs—majoring in Public Relations at Boston University. She'll probably make you feel like you're the world's greatest comedian because she tends to laugh at anything anyone says. When she's not writing for HC, you can find her at SoulCycle, watching The Bachelor, or eating chocolate chip cookies.
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