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Healthy Eating in College Park

College has notoriously been a place where beer and pizza can be purchased for a dollar. With college students budgeting their money, it’s easy to pick up a slice or carbohydrate-filled lunch for a few bucks.
In addition to the myriad of unhealthy food choices, students are also occupied with busy academic schedules and extracurricular activities, leaving little time for exercise.

Somewhere in the mix, however, there are alternative choices that can be made, and hey, every little bit counts!

With temperatures reaching 70 degrees, this is the perfect time to throw on your sneakers and power walk to class. Turn down the ride from your friend and walk! Instead of taking a flat route to class, try taking a path with stairs or hills to get your heart rate up or walk the stairs in the library instead of the elevator. Stride counter devices are inexpensive and available on Amazon.com to track your every step! You’d be surprised how far you walk on the average day.

The difficult thing for most college students, however, is the food consumption. Instead of a late night slice, why not opt for a Jimmy John’s lettuce wrap. Ditch the mayonnaise and add some mustard and you can lower your calorie and carbohydrate intake!

Craving something sweet? Brands like Dannon and Chobani make Greek yogurts that are fat-free and taste great. Not sweet enough? Sprinkle some Splenda on top for a no calorie sweetener. Other College Park alternatives to yogurt, like Yogiberry and YoLove, offer low fat frozen yogurts with a variety of fresh fruits to add as toppings.

Dr. Pierre Dukan, a French nutritionist, is the author of a recent diet book titled “The Dukan Diet.” His book focuses on turning a practical diet into a normal lifestyle to keep weight off for good. The diet centers on a protein filled agenda where participants can eat unlimited amounts of lean protein. After 5-7 days of this “attack” phase, participants can begin to alternate between one day of pure protein and one day of protein and a choice of vegetables. The idea is that participants remain in this phase until an ideal weight is reached. At this point, participants remain on the alternating schedule, but are allowed “celebration days” in which they can eat whatever they choose, in moderation, as long as they resume the pure protein ritual once each week. In the final phase of this diet, the idea is that participants can resume a regular lifestyle because healthy eating habits have been learned. In addition to the paramerts of this diet, participants are encouraged to eat three tablespoons of oat bran each day. Oat bran is tasty and fiber-filled and can be used as a topping for yogurt or cooked with egg whites, fat free yogurt and Splenda for a delicious pancake.

Danielle Sabar is a junior communications major. In high school, Sabar was a dancer and was always cautious of her weight. In college, although she claims it is extremely difficult, she still makes healthy choices.

“I try to cut out bread where I can and I try to cut back on my late night eating,” Sabar said.
Healthy eating is difficult in college, but it is certainly not impossible. There are simple ways to assure you are making the most out of you meals and most importantly, are feeling great about your choices!

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