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6 Healthy Eating Tips for Students

3 March 2022

When we think about the typical diet of a university student what is the first thing that comes to mind? For many, it’s not the prettiest picture.

Here at Novel Student, we’re committed to helping students live their best life. That’s why we’ve pulled together these 7 top tips to help keep on top of your diet and stay as productive as possible!

So what? You’re young, you don’t have to worry about health yet, right? Well….yes and no. All those bad habits do have a way of sneaking up on you and, what’s more, they could be having an adverse effect on your productivity making your life harder than it needs to be!

So, if you’ve been snacking on instant noodles whilst tackling those all-important deadlines, we’ve got some tips for how to improve your eating habits and get you on the right track.

 

Healthy Snacking

University is the perfect time to build good habits that will set you up for a healthy lifestyle through to graduation and beyond.

We all know how convenient it is to pull out a packet of biscuits while finishing off an essay or turn to energy drinks to fuel those all-night revision sessions.

If snacks like these often get the better of you, try substituting chocolate, crisps and sweets with pretzels, dried fruits and unbuttered popcorn.

Another great option is raw vegetables paired with dips, such as houmous. This often does the trick in staving off cravings and between-meal stomach rumblings.

 

Have a Hearty Breakfast

They say it’s the most important meal of the day but it’s one that so many students skip, especially if they are rolling out of bed and rushing off to morning lectures.

As tempting as those extra ten minutes in bed are, it really can’t be stressed enough just how vital a good breakfast is for keeping your energy levels up.

Studies even show that skipping breakfast can be detrimental to your academic performance. Being a good student requires brainpower, which means stocking up on essential nutrients and vitamins.

How about grabbing a piece of fruit and a bagel on the way to uni, along with a nice fruit juice to kickstart the day? Or, if you’re a resident at one of Novel’s student properties, why not make the most of our weekday grab and go breakfast?

 

Drink More Water

Dehydration shrinks the brain. It’s a sobering thought, right? Most of us could do with drinking a bit, and for many a lot, more water.

Admittedly, it’s not the most flavoursome of drinks so might not be the go-to when choosing a beverage. But the health benefits are priceless – more focus, increased energy, better memory, improved physical fitness and clearer skin, stronger hair and nails – just to name a few!

Experts recommend drinking 8 glasses a day to stay hydrated, so it’s a great idea to invest in a water bottle to carry with you when on the go.

If the taste of water bores you, perhaps try flavoured waters – which are available in most shops. Just avoid the fizzy options, which can be damaging to your teeth!

 

Have a Balanced Diet

It’s easy to get stuck in a rut with certain food groups and dishes and to end up eating the same 3 or 4 meals for the sake of convenience, or perhaps a lack of culinary expertise.

Eating a balanced diet doesn’t have to be hard, though. There are 7 essential components to a healthy, balanced diet: carbohydrates, protein, fat, fibre, vitamins, minerals and water.

Each day you should be eating a combination of:

  • starchy foods such as bread, potatoes, or pasta
  • 5 portions of fruit and vegetables – especially leafy greens as they are rich in iron!
  • Beans, pulses, fish, lean white meats and the occasional portion of red meat
  • Dairy products – milk, eggs, cheese, butter (or alternatives)
  • Fluids  – 8 glasses of water a day recommended intake
  • Reduced amount of unsaturated oils and spreads

 

Feed Your Brain with Fish

There’s an old wives’ tale that fish is brain food. For once, the old wives’ tale is true!

Fish is packed with vitamins and minerals, and is a great source of protein. Some oily fish are also rich in Omega-3 oils which are great for preventing heart disease.

So if you want to maximise the potential of your grey matter in those all-important final exams, make sure you’re including fish in your diet at least twice a week.

Get Exercising!

Alright, so this one isn’t strictly an eating tip. But, it is related to healthy eating, as the amount of exercise you do usually has a direct impact on your eating habits.

You might like to join a sports club while at uni, or perhaps you’ll walk or cycle to class. The more exercise you do, the more your body craves nutrients to repair muscles and tissues.

It’s important to replenish all those calories burned off with healthy snacks, vegetables and proteins. You’d be surprised by how much more productive you’ll be after working out, not to mention the stress release and mental health benefits regular exercise provides.

Don’t forget that when forming good habits your environment plays a big part in maintaining those habits.

If you’re serious about keeping healthy throughout your university studies, why not consider Novel’s student accommodation? Novel Student offers student living with a real emphasis on supporting the wellbeing of our residents.

That means access to fully equipped gym facilities and studios, with exercise classes and one-to-one personal training sessions.

 

In addition, Novel Student facilities provide advice and guidance, nutritional support, mindfulness and motivational talks from inspiring people. If that sounds good, check out the Novel Student website here.

 

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