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The Freshman 15 Struggle

If you ask any high school senior what their greatest fear of going to college is, you’ll get a variety of answers:

“What if my roommate’s insane?”— I’ll admit, I lucked out in that area. 

“I’ll miss my family.”— It’ll pass. 

“Being far away from home.”— If you were closer, you wouldn’t want to go home. 

“I’ll run out of money.”— Yup, that’s a very real thing. Instead, ask your mom if the two of you can have a shopping day rather than Amazon Prime-ing everything. 

“It’ll be too hard.”— My answer to that is: life’s hard. I believe the quote is, “College is looking both ways to cross the street and getting hit by a plane.” Bottom line, you’ll be okay.

Another underestimated factor of transitioning into college is the infamous “freshman 15.”  This is when your parents aren’t there to make sure you have every food group packed for lunch. They aren’t there to scold you when you take five cookies from the cookie jar. They’re the ones who send the cookies. 

I knew that this would be an issue. On the first day of my freshman year, I made sure to put my box of junk food in the darkest, furthest corner underneath my bed. I figured some things take more motivation, and getting out of bed is one of them.  

As the weeks went by, the box made it closer and closer to the outside world.  In fact, within the first week, there were crumbs on my brand new comforter.

I’m not proud of it, but it’s true. 

So, these are 15 foods that did not help my freshman 15, and they certainly won’t help you.


1. M&Ms -- My weakness. It didn't help that my grandfather knew they were my favorite. The pack of 21 servings that he sent me only lasted two or three days.

2. Cookies -- Ah, the perfect dessert after any meal, or the easiest breakfast when you realize you have four minutes to make it to class. Unfortunately, my parents were to blame for this one. FYI mom and dad, I eat everything when I'm stressed.

3. Sushi -- Isn't it supposed to be healthy? What, with the veggies, lean fish, and rice? It makes the perfect midnight snack when you realize you still have three meals left because you slept through lunch a bunch of times that week.

4. French Fries -- Always available. Always there, beckoning for you to make the unhealthy choice, rather than choosing carrots and celery. 

5. Mozzarella Sticks -- Why have one when you can have four?  They are just 89 cents in the C-store, so potentially, I could get 25 of them for about $6.  Now who’s winning? Not the scale I’m stepping on…

6. Popcorn -- It's the perfect midnight snack...as long as you don’t set off the fire alarm.

7. Quesadilla-- A little Mexican-American flare here, a little more weight gain there...

8. Pizza -- Domino's to be more specific. It's the only place that delivers until 3:00 am. You can even pay with dining dollars--they're practically asking for a troop of drunk, tired, or study-brained students to be calling every weekend.

9. Gatorade -- It ain't just for athletes, folks. Using it as a ~mixer~ for your beverage of choice adds up. 

10. Donuts -- But not just any donuts. Krispy Kreme donuts. And that's all I have to say about that one. 

11. Pink Lemonade -- It's always available, just like french fries. I'm never stuck with water. But I will be stuck with 100 extra calories.

12. Milkshakes -- F'Real machines have become an issue in my life. Just pick your flavor, pop it in, and wah-lah! A sweet, delicious milkshake right at your fingertips...and later on, right at your thighs.

 13. Nutella -- Not just for breakfast, not just for toast. It's for eating by itself, no questions asked. Spoon-to-jar action.

14. Muffins -- Bless muffin Friday's at the kiosks. I've altered my route to class on those mornings just to get my hands on them. I don't just pick up one, either. I pick up two, three, sometimes even four. It's never too late to stock up.15. Cheesy Breadsticks -- From, you guessed it, the notorious Domino's. Along with your large pizza, why don't you also order its beloved companion? You won't regret it...but your jeans might.

So, a message to the incoming freshman:

It is inevitable. It seems to be every school’s mission to destroy that body you had all summer, and all throughout high school. Luckily, by the time it becomes a problem, you’ll already have friends! And since we go home in May, you’ve got a solid month before you’ve got to get that bikini body ready again. 

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