Tips and advice to help you keep off those extra pounds

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Every year, thousands of students go off to college to expand their minds and end up expanding their pants in the process. The “freshman 15,” the phenomenon of gaining weight during the first year of college, seems about as unavoidable as sleeping through your alarm or waiting until the last minute to write a paper on the existential meaning of Waiting for Godot. Thanks to the combination of all-you-can-eat dining halls, late-night takeout, beer, stress, more beer, and lack of physical activity, many students gain flab right along with knowledge.

Click here to see the How to Avoid the Freshman 15 Slideshow.

But while most students do gain weight during their freshman year, it’s thankfully less than the freshman 15. A study of freshman at Indiana University in Bloomington and Tufts University in Boston found that on average, female students gained a little over seven pounds, while male students gained about nine. But the fact that the freshman 15 is more like the freshman 10, doesn’t mean that students and parents shouldn’t be concerned about the extra weight gain.

Students tend to continue gaining weight well past their freshman year. By the end of their senior years, women had gained an average of ten pounds, while men had put on fourteen pounds. And not surprisingly, obesity rates are fastest growing among 18-29 year olds. Avoiding weight gain during the first year of college by establishing healthy eating and exercising habits is an important step to becoming a healthy adult. So here are some tips to help you avoid growing out of your sweatpants during your freshman year of college.

Click here to see the How to Avoid the Freshman 15 Slideshow.


How to Avoid the Freshman 15 - Recipes

I have 3 daughters, each 5 years apart, and all were fortunate enough to go to college. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about how to help kids transition into living independently and learning to take care of themselves.

How to manage food in college is a big deal. It’s right up there with time management, developing good sleep habits, study habits and self control. All of those will be tested. As parents, we helped them understand what their bodies needed to make them feel and do their best. As young adults, they may or may not have grasped what it takes to take good care of themselves, and watching them make those mistakes can be painful. Here are some things I’ve learned.

  1. Choose the right meal plan.
    Most freshmen live on campus and have access to a cafeteria and meal plan. Your tendency might be to sign them up for the 3 meals a day + snacks 7 days a week. After all, the LAST thing you want is for your child to be hungry. The reality is that these days, with so many different sources of food, it’s easy to get food from many places. Friday night’s evening meal may often be pizza or sub sandwiches, out or ordered in. Really talk through the meal plan options with your son or daughter. You can always add on, but they usually don’t let you subtract meals from your plan. If you don’t use them, you usually lose them.
  2. Come up with a list of healthy snacks for their dorm fridge.
    It’ll happen that your student will forfeit the cafeteria and eat something out of their dorm fridge, especially if they have an early morning class. Encourage them to EAT SOMETHING before they head out or at least pack something for later. Good snacks for the dorm room include hard boiled eggs, deli meat and bread, peanut butter, protein bars, fruits, carrots, low sugar cereal, milk, yogurt and nuts, cottage cheese and popcorn. The inevitable snacking is another reason why that meal plan doesn’t have to be the absolute biggest.
  3. Teach them how to make healthy snacks.
    If you give them good fresh ingredients, they need to know what to do with them. Spend a little time coming up with simple things for them to make. Watch quick cooking videos for ideas. There are lots of easy video recipes that teach your student tricks on how to make snacks in their dorm room. Remember that protein stays with you longer and boosts brain power. Include protein in all your meals and snacks.
  4. Talk to them about waiting too long to eat.
    This is a classic freshman problem. They don’t get up for breakfast and by the time they are done with their morning classes, it’s early afternoon and they are ready to eat their hands off. They wolf down 3 or 4 large servings of pasta and then feel really bad for the rest of the day and may or may not eat a decent dinner. That is the formula for slowing your metabolism down to a screeching halt. They need to develop a habit of eating something before they start classes so they will make better eating choices the rest of the day. They also need to pack a snack for midmorning or midday to keep that metabolism burning efficiently and to boost their brain power.

Dropping your child off for college is both happy and sad. They are about to start a very exciting and important time in their life, but it can be hard to let go. Mistakes will be made but in a controlled environment. You’ve given them the tools and now it’s time for them to use them. The school year will go fast, and before you know it, they’ll be home for the summer. That’s a whole different story )

If you enjoyed this article and would like to share it with a friend, please do. At MEAL5.com, our mission is to help people improve their eating habits and their health with simple, easy recipes and healthy meal plans. Thank you for taking time to read this article. Eat well. Be happy. Be smart.


How to Avoid the Freshman 15 - Recipes

I have 3 daughters, each 5 years apart, and all were fortunate enough to go to college. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about how to help kids transition into living independently and learning to take care of themselves.

How to manage food in college is a big deal. It’s right up there with time management, developing good sleep habits, study habits and self control. All of those will be tested. As parents, we helped them understand what their bodies needed to make them feel and do their best. As young adults, they may or may not have grasped what it takes to take good care of themselves, and watching them make those mistakes can be painful. Here are some things I’ve learned.

  1. Choose the right meal plan.
    Most freshmen live on campus and have access to a cafeteria and meal plan. Your tendency might be to sign them up for the 3 meals a day + snacks 7 days a week. After all, the LAST thing you want is for your child to be hungry. The reality is that these days, with so many different sources of food, it’s easy to get food from many places. Friday night’s evening meal may often be pizza or sub sandwiches, out or ordered in. Really talk through the meal plan options with your son or daughter. You can always add on, but they usually don’t let you subtract meals from your plan. If you don’t use them, you usually lose them.
  2. Come up with a list of healthy snacks for their dorm fridge.
    It’ll happen that your student will forfeit the cafeteria and eat something out of their dorm fridge, especially if they have an early morning class. Encourage them to EAT SOMETHING before they head out or at least pack something for later. Good snacks for the dorm room include hard boiled eggs, deli meat and bread, peanut butter, protein bars, fruits, carrots, low sugar cereal, milk, yogurt and nuts, cottage cheese and popcorn. The inevitable snacking is another reason why that meal plan doesn’t have to be the absolute biggest.
  3. Teach them how to make healthy snacks.
    If you give them good fresh ingredients, they need to know what to do with them. Spend a little time coming up with simple things for them to make. Watch quick cooking videos for ideas. There are lots of easy video recipes that teach your student tricks on how to make snacks in their dorm room. Remember that protein stays with you longer and boosts brain power. Include protein in all your meals and snacks.
  4. Talk to them about waiting too long to eat.
    This is a classic freshman problem. They don’t get up for breakfast and by the time they are done with their morning classes, it’s early afternoon and they are ready to eat their hands off. They wolf down 3 or 4 large servings of pasta and then feel really bad for the rest of the day and may or may not eat a decent dinner. That is the formula for slowing your metabolism down to a screeching halt. They need to develop a habit of eating something before they start classes so they will make better eating choices the rest of the day. They also need to pack a snack for midmorning or midday to keep that metabolism burning efficiently and to boost their brain power.

Dropping your child off for college is both happy and sad. They are about to start a very exciting and important time in their life, but it can be hard to let go. Mistakes will be made but in a controlled environment. You’ve given them the tools and now it’s time for them to use them. The school year will go fast, and before you know it, they’ll be home for the summer. That’s a whole different story )

If you enjoyed this article and would like to share it with a friend, please do. At MEAL5.com, our mission is to help people improve their eating habits and their health with simple, easy recipes and healthy meal plans. Thank you for taking time to read this article. Eat well. Be happy. Be smart.


How to Avoid the Freshman 15 - Recipes

I have 3 daughters, each 5 years apart, and all were fortunate enough to go to college. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about how to help kids transition into living independently and learning to take care of themselves.

How to manage food in college is a big deal. It’s right up there with time management, developing good sleep habits, study habits and self control. All of those will be tested. As parents, we helped them understand what their bodies needed to make them feel and do their best. As young adults, they may or may not have grasped what it takes to take good care of themselves, and watching them make those mistakes can be painful. Here are some things I’ve learned.

  1. Choose the right meal plan.
    Most freshmen live on campus and have access to a cafeteria and meal plan. Your tendency might be to sign them up for the 3 meals a day + snacks 7 days a week. After all, the LAST thing you want is for your child to be hungry. The reality is that these days, with so many different sources of food, it’s easy to get food from many places. Friday night’s evening meal may often be pizza or sub sandwiches, out or ordered in. Really talk through the meal plan options with your son or daughter. You can always add on, but they usually don’t let you subtract meals from your plan. If you don’t use them, you usually lose them.
  2. Come up with a list of healthy snacks for their dorm fridge.
    It’ll happen that your student will forfeit the cafeteria and eat something out of their dorm fridge, especially if they have an early morning class. Encourage them to EAT SOMETHING before they head out or at least pack something for later. Good snacks for the dorm room include hard boiled eggs, deli meat and bread, peanut butter, protein bars, fruits, carrots, low sugar cereal, milk, yogurt and nuts, cottage cheese and popcorn. The inevitable snacking is another reason why that meal plan doesn’t have to be the absolute biggest.
  3. Teach them how to make healthy snacks.
    If you give them good fresh ingredients, they need to know what to do with them. Spend a little time coming up with simple things for them to make. Watch quick cooking videos for ideas. There are lots of easy video recipes that teach your student tricks on how to make snacks in their dorm room. Remember that protein stays with you longer and boosts brain power. Include protein in all your meals and snacks.
  4. Talk to them about waiting too long to eat.
    This is a classic freshman problem. They don’t get up for breakfast and by the time they are done with their morning classes, it’s early afternoon and they are ready to eat their hands off. They wolf down 3 or 4 large servings of pasta and then feel really bad for the rest of the day and may or may not eat a decent dinner. That is the formula for slowing your metabolism down to a screeching halt. They need to develop a habit of eating something before they start classes so they will make better eating choices the rest of the day. They also need to pack a snack for midmorning or midday to keep that metabolism burning efficiently and to boost their brain power.

Dropping your child off for college is both happy and sad. They are about to start a very exciting and important time in their life, but it can be hard to let go. Mistakes will be made but in a controlled environment. You’ve given them the tools and now it’s time for them to use them. The school year will go fast, and before you know it, they’ll be home for the summer. That’s a whole different story )

If you enjoyed this article and would like to share it with a friend, please do. At MEAL5.com, our mission is to help people improve their eating habits and their health with simple, easy recipes and healthy meal plans. Thank you for taking time to read this article. Eat well. Be happy. Be smart.


How to Avoid the Freshman 15 - Recipes

I have 3 daughters, each 5 years apart, and all were fortunate enough to go to college. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about how to help kids transition into living independently and learning to take care of themselves.

How to manage food in college is a big deal. It’s right up there with time management, developing good sleep habits, study habits and self control. All of those will be tested. As parents, we helped them understand what their bodies needed to make them feel and do their best. As young adults, they may or may not have grasped what it takes to take good care of themselves, and watching them make those mistakes can be painful. Here are some things I’ve learned.

  1. Choose the right meal plan.
    Most freshmen live on campus and have access to a cafeteria and meal plan. Your tendency might be to sign them up for the 3 meals a day + snacks 7 days a week. After all, the LAST thing you want is for your child to be hungry. The reality is that these days, with so many different sources of food, it’s easy to get food from many places. Friday night’s evening meal may often be pizza or sub sandwiches, out or ordered in. Really talk through the meal plan options with your son or daughter. You can always add on, but they usually don’t let you subtract meals from your plan. If you don’t use them, you usually lose them.
  2. Come up with a list of healthy snacks for their dorm fridge.
    It’ll happen that your student will forfeit the cafeteria and eat something out of their dorm fridge, especially if they have an early morning class. Encourage them to EAT SOMETHING before they head out or at least pack something for later. Good snacks for the dorm room include hard boiled eggs, deli meat and bread, peanut butter, protein bars, fruits, carrots, low sugar cereal, milk, yogurt and nuts, cottage cheese and popcorn. The inevitable snacking is another reason why that meal plan doesn’t have to be the absolute biggest.
  3. Teach them how to make healthy snacks.
    If you give them good fresh ingredients, they need to know what to do with them. Spend a little time coming up with simple things for them to make. Watch quick cooking videos for ideas. There are lots of easy video recipes that teach your student tricks on how to make snacks in their dorm room. Remember that protein stays with you longer and boosts brain power. Include protein in all your meals and snacks.
  4. Talk to them about waiting too long to eat.
    This is a classic freshman problem. They don’t get up for breakfast and by the time they are done with their morning classes, it’s early afternoon and they are ready to eat their hands off. They wolf down 3 or 4 large servings of pasta and then feel really bad for the rest of the day and may or may not eat a decent dinner. That is the formula for slowing your metabolism down to a screeching halt. They need to develop a habit of eating something before they start classes so they will make better eating choices the rest of the day. They also need to pack a snack for midmorning or midday to keep that metabolism burning efficiently and to boost their brain power.

Dropping your child off for college is both happy and sad. They are about to start a very exciting and important time in their life, but it can be hard to let go. Mistakes will be made but in a controlled environment. You’ve given them the tools and now it’s time for them to use them. The school year will go fast, and before you know it, they’ll be home for the summer. That’s a whole different story )

If you enjoyed this article and would like to share it with a friend, please do. At MEAL5.com, our mission is to help people improve their eating habits and their health with simple, easy recipes and healthy meal plans. Thank you for taking time to read this article. Eat well. Be happy. Be smart.


How to Avoid the Freshman 15 - Recipes

I have 3 daughters, each 5 years apart, and all were fortunate enough to go to college. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about how to help kids transition into living independently and learning to take care of themselves.

How to manage food in college is a big deal. It’s right up there with time management, developing good sleep habits, study habits and self control. All of those will be tested. As parents, we helped them understand what their bodies needed to make them feel and do their best. As young adults, they may or may not have grasped what it takes to take good care of themselves, and watching them make those mistakes can be painful. Here are some things I’ve learned.

  1. Choose the right meal plan.
    Most freshmen live on campus and have access to a cafeteria and meal plan. Your tendency might be to sign them up for the 3 meals a day + snacks 7 days a week. After all, the LAST thing you want is for your child to be hungry. The reality is that these days, with so many different sources of food, it’s easy to get food from many places. Friday night’s evening meal may often be pizza or sub sandwiches, out or ordered in. Really talk through the meal plan options with your son or daughter. You can always add on, but they usually don’t let you subtract meals from your plan. If you don’t use them, you usually lose them.
  2. Come up with a list of healthy snacks for their dorm fridge.
    It’ll happen that your student will forfeit the cafeteria and eat something out of their dorm fridge, especially if they have an early morning class. Encourage them to EAT SOMETHING before they head out or at least pack something for later. Good snacks for the dorm room include hard boiled eggs, deli meat and bread, peanut butter, protein bars, fruits, carrots, low sugar cereal, milk, yogurt and nuts, cottage cheese and popcorn. The inevitable snacking is another reason why that meal plan doesn’t have to be the absolute biggest.
  3. Teach them how to make healthy snacks.
    If you give them good fresh ingredients, they need to know what to do with them. Spend a little time coming up with simple things for them to make. Watch quick cooking videos for ideas. There are lots of easy video recipes that teach your student tricks on how to make snacks in their dorm room. Remember that protein stays with you longer and boosts brain power. Include protein in all your meals and snacks.
  4. Talk to them about waiting too long to eat.
    This is a classic freshman problem. They don’t get up for breakfast and by the time they are done with their morning classes, it’s early afternoon and they are ready to eat their hands off. They wolf down 3 or 4 large servings of pasta and then feel really bad for the rest of the day and may or may not eat a decent dinner. That is the formula for slowing your metabolism down to a screeching halt. They need to develop a habit of eating something before they start classes so they will make better eating choices the rest of the day. They also need to pack a snack for midmorning or midday to keep that metabolism burning efficiently and to boost their brain power.

Dropping your child off for college is both happy and sad. They are about to start a very exciting and important time in their life, but it can be hard to let go. Mistakes will be made but in a controlled environment. You’ve given them the tools and now it’s time for them to use them. The school year will go fast, and before you know it, they’ll be home for the summer. That’s a whole different story )

If you enjoyed this article and would like to share it with a friend, please do. At MEAL5.com, our mission is to help people improve their eating habits and their health with simple, easy recipes and healthy meal plans. Thank you for taking time to read this article. Eat well. Be happy. Be smart.


How to Avoid the Freshman 15 - Recipes

I have 3 daughters, each 5 years apart, and all were fortunate enough to go to college. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about how to help kids transition into living independently and learning to take care of themselves.

How to manage food in college is a big deal. It’s right up there with time management, developing good sleep habits, study habits and self control. All of those will be tested. As parents, we helped them understand what their bodies needed to make them feel and do their best. As young adults, they may or may not have grasped what it takes to take good care of themselves, and watching them make those mistakes can be painful. Here are some things I’ve learned.

  1. Choose the right meal plan.
    Most freshmen live on campus and have access to a cafeteria and meal plan. Your tendency might be to sign them up for the 3 meals a day + snacks 7 days a week. After all, the LAST thing you want is for your child to be hungry. The reality is that these days, with so many different sources of food, it’s easy to get food from many places. Friday night’s evening meal may often be pizza or sub sandwiches, out or ordered in. Really talk through the meal plan options with your son or daughter. You can always add on, but they usually don’t let you subtract meals from your plan. If you don’t use them, you usually lose them.
  2. Come up with a list of healthy snacks for their dorm fridge.
    It’ll happen that your student will forfeit the cafeteria and eat something out of their dorm fridge, especially if they have an early morning class. Encourage them to EAT SOMETHING before they head out or at least pack something for later. Good snacks for the dorm room include hard boiled eggs, deli meat and bread, peanut butter, protein bars, fruits, carrots, low sugar cereal, milk, yogurt and nuts, cottage cheese and popcorn. The inevitable snacking is another reason why that meal plan doesn’t have to be the absolute biggest.
  3. Teach them how to make healthy snacks.
    If you give them good fresh ingredients, they need to know what to do with them. Spend a little time coming up with simple things for them to make. Watch quick cooking videos for ideas. There are lots of easy video recipes that teach your student tricks on how to make snacks in their dorm room. Remember that protein stays with you longer and boosts brain power. Include protein in all your meals and snacks.
  4. Talk to them about waiting too long to eat.
    This is a classic freshman problem. They don’t get up for breakfast and by the time they are done with their morning classes, it’s early afternoon and they are ready to eat their hands off. They wolf down 3 or 4 large servings of pasta and then feel really bad for the rest of the day and may or may not eat a decent dinner. That is the formula for slowing your metabolism down to a screeching halt. They need to develop a habit of eating something before they start classes so they will make better eating choices the rest of the day. They also need to pack a snack for midmorning or midday to keep that metabolism burning efficiently and to boost their brain power.

Dropping your child off for college is both happy and sad. They are about to start a very exciting and important time in their life, but it can be hard to let go. Mistakes will be made but in a controlled environment. You’ve given them the tools and now it’s time for them to use them. The school year will go fast, and before you know it, they’ll be home for the summer. That’s a whole different story )

If you enjoyed this article and would like to share it with a friend, please do. At MEAL5.com, our mission is to help people improve their eating habits and their health with simple, easy recipes and healthy meal plans. Thank you for taking time to read this article. Eat well. Be happy. Be smart.


How to Avoid the Freshman 15 - Recipes

I have 3 daughters, each 5 years apart, and all were fortunate enough to go to college. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about how to help kids transition into living independently and learning to take care of themselves.

How to manage food in college is a big deal. It’s right up there with time management, developing good sleep habits, study habits and self control. All of those will be tested. As parents, we helped them understand what their bodies needed to make them feel and do their best. As young adults, they may or may not have grasped what it takes to take good care of themselves, and watching them make those mistakes can be painful. Here are some things I’ve learned.

  1. Choose the right meal plan.
    Most freshmen live on campus and have access to a cafeteria and meal plan. Your tendency might be to sign them up for the 3 meals a day + snacks 7 days a week. After all, the LAST thing you want is for your child to be hungry. The reality is that these days, with so many different sources of food, it’s easy to get food from many places. Friday night’s evening meal may often be pizza or sub sandwiches, out or ordered in. Really talk through the meal plan options with your son or daughter. You can always add on, but they usually don’t let you subtract meals from your plan. If you don’t use them, you usually lose them.
  2. Come up with a list of healthy snacks for their dorm fridge.
    It’ll happen that your student will forfeit the cafeteria and eat something out of their dorm fridge, especially if they have an early morning class. Encourage them to EAT SOMETHING before they head out or at least pack something for later. Good snacks for the dorm room include hard boiled eggs, deli meat and bread, peanut butter, protein bars, fruits, carrots, low sugar cereal, milk, yogurt and nuts, cottage cheese and popcorn. The inevitable snacking is another reason why that meal plan doesn’t have to be the absolute biggest.
  3. Teach them how to make healthy snacks.
    If you give them good fresh ingredients, they need to know what to do with them. Spend a little time coming up with simple things for them to make. Watch quick cooking videos for ideas. There are lots of easy video recipes that teach your student tricks on how to make snacks in their dorm room. Remember that protein stays with you longer and boosts brain power. Include protein in all your meals and snacks.
  4. Talk to them about waiting too long to eat.
    This is a classic freshman problem. They don’t get up for breakfast and by the time they are done with their morning classes, it’s early afternoon and they are ready to eat their hands off. They wolf down 3 or 4 large servings of pasta and then feel really bad for the rest of the day and may or may not eat a decent dinner. That is the formula for slowing your metabolism down to a screeching halt. They need to develop a habit of eating something before they start classes so they will make better eating choices the rest of the day. They also need to pack a snack for midmorning or midday to keep that metabolism burning efficiently and to boost their brain power.

Dropping your child off for college is both happy and sad. They are about to start a very exciting and important time in their life, but it can be hard to let go. Mistakes will be made but in a controlled environment. You’ve given them the tools and now it’s time for them to use them. The school year will go fast, and before you know it, they’ll be home for the summer. That’s a whole different story )

If you enjoyed this article and would like to share it with a friend, please do. At MEAL5.com, our mission is to help people improve their eating habits and their health with simple, easy recipes and healthy meal plans. Thank you for taking time to read this article. Eat well. Be happy. Be smart.


How to Avoid the Freshman 15 - Recipes

I have 3 daughters, each 5 years apart, and all were fortunate enough to go to college. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about how to help kids transition into living independently and learning to take care of themselves.

How to manage food in college is a big deal. It’s right up there with time management, developing good sleep habits, study habits and self control. All of those will be tested. As parents, we helped them understand what their bodies needed to make them feel and do their best. As young adults, they may or may not have grasped what it takes to take good care of themselves, and watching them make those mistakes can be painful. Here are some things I’ve learned.

  1. Choose the right meal plan.
    Most freshmen live on campus and have access to a cafeteria and meal plan. Your tendency might be to sign them up for the 3 meals a day + snacks 7 days a week. After all, the LAST thing you want is for your child to be hungry. The reality is that these days, with so many different sources of food, it’s easy to get food from many places. Friday night’s evening meal may often be pizza or sub sandwiches, out or ordered in. Really talk through the meal plan options with your son or daughter. You can always add on, but they usually don’t let you subtract meals from your plan. If you don’t use them, you usually lose them.
  2. Come up with a list of healthy snacks for their dorm fridge.
    It’ll happen that your student will forfeit the cafeteria and eat something out of their dorm fridge, especially if they have an early morning class. Encourage them to EAT SOMETHING before they head out or at least pack something for later. Good snacks for the dorm room include hard boiled eggs, deli meat and bread, peanut butter, protein bars, fruits, carrots, low sugar cereal, milk, yogurt and nuts, cottage cheese and popcorn. The inevitable snacking is another reason why that meal plan doesn’t have to be the absolute biggest.
  3. Teach them how to make healthy snacks.
    If you give them good fresh ingredients, they need to know what to do with them. Spend a little time coming up with simple things for them to make. Watch quick cooking videos for ideas. There are lots of easy video recipes that teach your student tricks on how to make snacks in their dorm room. Remember that protein stays with you longer and boosts brain power. Include protein in all your meals and snacks.
  4. Talk to them about waiting too long to eat.
    This is a classic freshman problem. They don’t get up for breakfast and by the time they are done with their morning classes, it’s early afternoon and they are ready to eat their hands off. They wolf down 3 or 4 large servings of pasta and then feel really bad for the rest of the day and may or may not eat a decent dinner. That is the formula for slowing your metabolism down to a screeching halt. They need to develop a habit of eating something before they start classes so they will make better eating choices the rest of the day. They also need to pack a snack for midmorning or midday to keep that metabolism burning efficiently and to boost their brain power.

Dropping your child off for college is both happy and sad. They are about to start a very exciting and important time in their life, but it can be hard to let go. Mistakes will be made but in a controlled environment. You’ve given them the tools and now it’s time for them to use them. The school year will go fast, and before you know it, they’ll be home for the summer. That’s a whole different story )

If you enjoyed this article and would like to share it with a friend, please do. At MEAL5.com, our mission is to help people improve their eating habits and their health with simple, easy recipes and healthy meal plans. Thank you for taking time to read this article. Eat well. Be happy. Be smart.


How to Avoid the Freshman 15 - Recipes

I have 3 daughters, each 5 years apart, and all were fortunate enough to go to college. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about how to help kids transition into living independently and learning to take care of themselves.

How to manage food in college is a big deal. It’s right up there with time management, developing good sleep habits, study habits and self control. All of those will be tested. As parents, we helped them understand what their bodies needed to make them feel and do their best. As young adults, they may or may not have grasped what it takes to take good care of themselves, and watching them make those mistakes can be painful. Here are some things I’ve learned.

  1. Choose the right meal plan.
    Most freshmen live on campus and have access to a cafeteria and meal plan. Your tendency might be to sign them up for the 3 meals a day + snacks 7 days a week. After all, the LAST thing you want is for your child to be hungry. The reality is that these days, with so many different sources of food, it’s easy to get food from many places. Friday night’s evening meal may often be pizza or sub sandwiches, out or ordered in. Really talk through the meal plan options with your son or daughter. You can always add on, but they usually don’t let you subtract meals from your plan. If you don’t use them, you usually lose them.
  2. Come up with a list of healthy snacks for their dorm fridge.
    It’ll happen that your student will forfeit the cafeteria and eat something out of their dorm fridge, especially if they have an early morning class. Encourage them to EAT SOMETHING before they head out or at least pack something for later. Good snacks for the dorm room include hard boiled eggs, deli meat and bread, peanut butter, protein bars, fruits, carrots, low sugar cereal, milk, yogurt and nuts, cottage cheese and popcorn. The inevitable snacking is another reason why that meal plan doesn’t have to be the absolute biggest.
  3. Teach them how to make healthy snacks.
    If you give them good fresh ingredients, they need to know what to do with them. Spend a little time coming up with simple things for them to make. Watch quick cooking videos for ideas. There are lots of easy video recipes that teach your student tricks on how to make snacks in their dorm room. Remember that protein stays with you longer and boosts brain power. Include protein in all your meals and snacks.
  4. Talk to them about waiting too long to eat.
    This is a classic freshman problem. They don’t get up for breakfast and by the time they are done with their morning classes, it’s early afternoon and they are ready to eat their hands off. They wolf down 3 or 4 large servings of pasta and then feel really bad for the rest of the day and may or may not eat a decent dinner. That is the formula for slowing your metabolism down to a screeching halt. They need to develop a habit of eating something before they start classes so they will make better eating choices the rest of the day. They also need to pack a snack for midmorning or midday to keep that metabolism burning efficiently and to boost their brain power.

Dropping your child off for college is both happy and sad. They are about to start a very exciting and important time in their life, but it can be hard to let go. Mistakes will be made but in a controlled environment. You’ve given them the tools and now it’s time for them to use them. The school year will go fast, and before you know it, they’ll be home for the summer. That’s a whole different story )

If you enjoyed this article and would like to share it with a friend, please do. At MEAL5.com, our mission is to help people improve their eating habits and their health with simple, easy recipes and healthy meal plans. Thank you for taking time to read this article. Eat well. Be happy. Be smart.


How to Avoid the Freshman 15 - Recipes

I have 3 daughters, each 5 years apart, and all were fortunate enough to go to college. Over the years, I’ve learned a lot about how to help kids transition into living independently and learning to take care of themselves.

How to manage food in college is a big deal. It’s right up there with time management, developing good sleep habits, study habits and self control. All of those will be tested. As parents, we helped them understand what their bodies needed to make them feel and do their best. As young adults, they may or may not have grasped what it takes to take good care of themselves, and watching them make those mistakes can be painful. Here are some things I’ve learned.

  1. Choose the right meal plan.
    Most freshmen live on campus and have access to a cafeteria and meal plan. Your tendency might be to sign them up for the 3 meals a day + snacks 7 days a week. After all, the LAST thing you want is for your child to be hungry. The reality is that these days, with so many different sources of food, it’s easy to get food from many places. Friday night’s evening meal may often be pizza or sub sandwiches, out or ordered in. Really talk through the meal plan options with your son or daughter. You can always add on, but they usually don’t let you subtract meals from your plan. If you don’t use them, you usually lose them.
  2. Come up with a list of healthy snacks for their dorm fridge.
    It’ll happen that your student will forfeit the cafeteria and eat something out of their dorm fridge, especially if they have an early morning class. Encourage them to EAT SOMETHING before they head out or at least pack something for later. Good snacks for the dorm room include hard boiled eggs, deli meat and bread, peanut butter, protein bars, fruits, carrots, low sugar cereal, milk, yogurt and nuts, cottage cheese and popcorn. The inevitable snacking is another reason why that meal plan doesn’t have to be the absolute biggest.
  3. Teach them how to make healthy snacks.
    If you give them good fresh ingredients, they need to know what to do with them. Spend a little time coming up with simple things for them to make. Watch quick cooking videos for ideas. There are lots of easy video recipes that teach your student tricks on how to make snacks in their dorm room. Remember that protein stays with you longer and boosts brain power. Include protein in all your meals and snacks.
  4. Talk to them about waiting too long to eat.
    This is a classic freshman problem. They don’t get up for breakfast and by the time they are done with their morning classes, it’s early afternoon and they are ready to eat their hands off. They wolf down 3 or 4 large servings of pasta and then feel really bad for the rest of the day and may or may not eat a decent dinner. That is the formula for slowing your metabolism down to a screeching halt. They need to develop a habit of eating something before they start classes so they will make better eating choices the rest of the day. They also need to pack a snack for midmorning or midday to keep that metabolism burning efficiently and to boost their brain power.

Dropping your child off for college is both happy and sad. They are about to start a very exciting and important time in their life, but it can be hard to let go. Mistakes will be made but in a controlled environment. You’ve given them the tools and now it’s time for them to use them. The school year will go fast, and before you know it, they’ll be home for the summer. That’s a whole different story )

If you enjoyed this article and would like to share it with a friend, please do. At MEAL5.com, our mission is to help people improve their eating habits and their health with simple, easy recipes and healthy meal plans. Thank you for taking time to read this article. Eat well. Be happy. Be smart.



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