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The Collegiette’s Guide To Happy And Healthy Living: 8 Foods To Kick To The Curb (Some Might Shock You)

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at FSU chapter.

If you’ve even considered taking on the organic or GMO-free lifestyle, here is a good place to start. I understand that as a college student it’s hard and expensive to completely change your eating habits. However, if you just start with these eight foods, it’ll make a world of difference.

            1. Hot Dogs. Tailgate season is in full swing and we all know that hot dogs are a necessity while cheering on your favorite team. However, nitrates used to increase the shelf life in hot dogs have been linked to cancer in test-animals.

            Instead: Look for organic or nitrate-free hot dogs.

            2. Canned Soups: The flu is in its prime on college campuses right now. While I know you want nothing more than to curl up in bed watching Netflix (as you should) and grab your favorite flavor of Campbell soup, these soups are filled with sodium and sweetened with high fructose corn syrup.

            Instead: Look for organic brands at Publix or Trader Joes. If the soups come in a box, EVEN BETTER! The cans leak chemicals into the soup that aren’t good for our bodies, but you can take baby steps for this one.

            3. Soda. Trust me when I say, this was the hardest bad “food” for me to come to terms with. Dr. Pepper had always been my go-to drink until I finally accepted the harsh reality. Soda is bad, ya’ll. High fructose corn syrup is the main ingredient in many of these drinks, which you should stay away from altogether. But don’t worry… there’s another option out there!

            Instead: Stores such as Whole Foods and even Publix are carrying organic sodas that you won’t believe aren’t “real” soda! My personal favorite is Blue Sky’s version of Dr. Pepper — Dr. Becker’s.  

            4. Milk. I know what you’re thinking… “Okay this girl is psychotic, how is milk bad for you?!” While that may be true, unless the cows that produced the milk were grass-fed, then the milk contains the same GMO’s and hormones that they were fed. This means you should always buy organic dairy products.

            Instead: There are plenty organic milk brands to choose from. There is even organic chocolate syrup so you can make your own organic chocolate milk. Really. I can’t make this stuff up. It’s really good, btdubs.

            5. Corn. Corn is one of the main genetically modified crops. In fact, only 7% of corn grown today does not contain GMO’s. Corn is also one of the most common ingredients used in foods because of high fructose corn syrup alone.

            Instead: When shopping for corn and processed foods where corn is an ingredient, you should always shop organic, or look for the non-GMO Project label shown at the bottom of the article.

            6. Soy. Foods with soy listed as a main ingredient may seem like a healthy alternative to some people. Soy milk, tofu, edamame… they all sound like good options to me.  However, many don’t realize that like corn, soy is also one of the most common genetically modified crops.

            Instead: Like corn, look for organic foods that contain soy or that non-GMO project label that I’m sure you’ve come to know and love by now.

            7. Frozen foods. Frozen foods are always the first thing to go for people on diets. That, or they are attracted to brands like Lean Cuisine. These are processed, filled with sodium, and sweetened with high fructose corn syrup.

            Instead: It’s probably easiest to avoid these foods altogether, but being college students, it’s hard to turn down a full meal that can be prepared in 2 minutes or less. Just make sure you buy organic foods. Brands like “Amy’s Kitchen” are always good choices.

            8. Canola and vegetable oil. If you decide campus dining halls aren’t for you and you want to fend for yourself, that’s great! But be careful of the oil you use for cooking. Canola     and vegetable oils are made with corn, soy, and cotton, which as I mentioned, are all GMO-filled crops.

            Instead: Try olive, coconut, or my favorite, sunflower oil.

The moral of the story… buy organic. It’s the easiest way to be sure that the foods you are buying contain no GMO’s or ingredients that could be potentially harmful.

Oh, and shop at Trader Joe’s. It’s cheap and they ALWAYS have free samples.

Photo credit: memebase.com

Courtnee is a senior at the beautiful Florida State Univeristy majoring in Public Relations. She is involved in various student organizations on campus, is a Resident Assistant in Landis Hall (shout out to her BLG fam and the 4th floor!), and works part time at The Zimmerman Agency doing what she loves.In her free time, you can find Courtnee reading a book, playing soccer, binge watching netflix, laying on the beach, or eating entire pints of Ben & Jerry's ice cream in one sitting (usually while binge watching Netflix).She has a slight obsession with puppies and boybands and her wonderful family.After graduation, Courtnee is moving to Munich, Germany for a year where she will be an au pair. Once back from this journey Courtnee hopes to move to New York City and find a way to become a part of the SNL team, whether it's as a public relations associate, cast member or janitor... She WILL make it to SNL.She hopes you take something out of "The Collegiette's Guide to Happy and Healthy Living," even if it's just a laugh. Thank you for reading :) "She was a girl who new how to be happy even when she was sad, and that's important." ~Marilyn Monroe
Her Campus at Florida State University.