Living at university residence doesn’t mean you can’t prioritise a healthy diet. In fact, there are small changes you can make to ensure that you eat healthier — here are 5.

Draw up a budget

We know this isn’t always easy, since your allowance may change from month to month, but it’s important to create a budget that more or less reflects your monthly costs. This way, you can allocate a set amount for food, toiletries and anything else you may need. Avoid careless spending with no plan or budget as this can often lead to you having to live off food that isn’t very nutritious, like instant noodles.

Plan your meals

Student life is demanding, so you may not have the time to cook a healthy meal everyday. That’s why it’s important to plan and prep your meals in advance. For example, you could prepare your dinner or lunch for the week on Sunday evening, pack it into containers and put it in the freezer. This way you’ll have enough food for the week that you can just defrost and enjoy.

Don’t skip breakfast

You’ve probably heard this a thousand times, but we can’t emphasise the importance of a good breakfast enough. Not only are breakfast foods and cereals easy to prepare, but they’re also packed with fibre and vitamins, helping you concentrate better and be more energetic throughout the day. Eating a filling breakfast also makes it less likely for you to have random cravings, which means you’re probably not going to binge on junk food.

Stock up on healthy snacks

Healthy snacks like fruits, some veggies, nuts and yoghurt are tasty substitutes for things like potato chips, sweets and chocolate. They don’t have to be expensive either, since you can make them yourself. For example, you can dry and roast pumpkin seeds, add some seasoning and there you’ve got a yummy snack. It’s also a good idea to replace fizzy cool drinks with water, fruit juice or homemade iced tea.

If it’s white, it’s not right

This rule makes it pretty simple to stay away from foods that don’t have a lot of nutritional value. For example, brown rice is a whole grain and it contains more fibre, vitamins and minerals than white rice. The rule also applies to bread and pasta — brown and wholewheat are always healthier options.

The food you eat doesn’t just affect your body, it also has a huge impact on your memory, energy levels and sleep patterns — all of which are extremely important if you want to get good grades. So prioritise healthy eating even while you’re at res and you’ll definitely thank yourself for it.

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