There are few tasks more difficult than altering one’s eating habits. The challenge is even more tedious for broke college students like myself. Realistically, our universities succeed in serving fries and burgers but fail to offer a good variety of healthy foods to students. It certainly doesn’t help when several fast food establishments are within walking distance. We tend to buy the same foods and fall into the same patterns but shaking it up may be the key to living a healthier lifestyle. Below are a few tips and recipes to help you begin that transformation.
· Eat four to six smaller meals a day and healthy snacks in between.
· As the saying goes, everything may test better fried, but the extra oils take a toll on your body. Use different cooking methods such as steaming, baking, broiling or roasting.
· Choose lean meats and low-fat dairy products.
· Drink six to eight glasses of water every day to keep the body hydrated.
· Like mom and dad always said, make sure to eat those veggies!
· Serve reasonably sized portion sizes.
· Plan meals a week ahead to avoid preparing over processed boxed meals.
· Aim to feel satisfied not full
Following are two delicious recipes I’ve made several times. Eating healthier doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice taste for results.
Banana Bread-Simple and tasty. Make a loaf and have a snack you can take with you to work or school
- ⅓ cup unsweetened applesauce
- ¼ cup honey
- 2 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs (can be substituted with applesauce)
- 3 large ripe bananas, mashed (about 1 1/2 cups)
- ¼ cup unsweetened almond milk
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1½ cups white whole-wheat flour
Chicken Stir-fry-Can’t go wrong with a good stir-fry, especially one packed with vegetables
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 3 large carrots, peeled and julienned
- 1 large red bell pepper, julienned
- 1 large yellow bell pepper, julienned
- 1 cup snow peas, sliced into 1” pieces
- 8 ounces button mushrooms, sliced thinly
- 2 cups frozen broccoli, defrosted
- 1 tablespoons cornstarch or arrowroot powder
- 4 cups cooked brown rice
- Sliced green onions and toasted sesame seeds, for serving
It may seem overwhelming at first but transitioning to a healthy lifestyle is an achievable goal. The only way we can truly begin this transformation is by taking that first giant leap to a healthier existence.