Starting college is an exciting time. For a lot of young students, college is the first opportunity they have to ‘adult’ and a lot of us fall at the first hurdle. When working hard and partying harder, it doesn’t take long for students to fall into unhealthy habits. It’s easy to drink too much, skip exercise session and eat ramen noodles at midnight, but after just a few weeks of this, your body may begin to feel the effects.
Unhealthy eating and drinking can have a negative impact on your weight, your mental wellbeing, and your academic performance. When you first start college, it’s important to stay at the top of your game and keep your grades up, and making healthy choices can make this a lot easier. In this article, we list 5 good habits that will help to keep you happy and healthy throughout your college career.
- Join an Exercise Club
Exercise is a key component of a healthy lifestyle, and it can be one of the things that students neglect the most. During high school, most of us take part in some form of physical activity on a regular basis. Whether this is cheerleading or track, it plays some part in keeping us fit and healthy. However, when students begin college, many opt to skip the extracurricular sports in favor of studying or parties.
It’s important to make new friends and get involved in social activities when you first start college and sports clubs and fitness classes can offer a great opportunity to meet new people who also share your passion for a healthy lifestyle. Even if you only workout once or twice a week, it will go a long way to making you feel more fit and healthy.
- Eat Well
This seems like an obvious point to make, but slipping into unhealthy eating habits is one of the easiest things to do, and it can also be one of the hardest habits to break. It’s important to focus on your eating habits from day one in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle. When you first start college, settling in can feel like a whirlwind, and many people will feel overwhelmed and neglect healthy foods.
To combat this, more and more people are taking advantage of meal kit services, which compile ingredients for healthy meals and deliver them to your door, which means none of your precious time is wasted at the grocery store. And if your schedule is too busy for cooking at all, there are a ton of options for healthy, meal prep delivery services, which could help you balance healthy eating with your time demands. These companies offer a variety of healthy meals at affordable prices, and they can deliver them straight to your door. The only thing easier than that is pizza delivery, but that’s not healthy!
- Cut Down On Coffee
For your first few months at college, you are probably going to be busier than you’ve ever been in your life. With new classes, social events and extracurriculars, it’s easy to feel burnt out and turn to our caffeine filled best friend for support. Whilst coffee is yummy and great for treating yourself after class, too much caffeine can really take a toll on your general health and well being. Overloading on coffee can lead to some serious health effects like anxiety, insomnia, and digestive issues, which can be really hard to deal with when you are adjusting to a new lifestyle.
If you find yourself lacking in energy, there are a ton of healthy foods and fruits that can give you that added boost, and you can also try taking vitamins to maintain a healthy balance in your body.
- Don’t Binge Drink
For most people, college is the first real opportunity we have to drink alcohol, and a lot of students get into a routine of drinking too much, too often. Although alcohol can be a nice addition in a social setting, when you drink too much on a regular basis, it can lead to a number of health issues. In the short term, drinking can make you feel tired, make you more likely to choose carb-heavy foods and increase your need for extra energy (like coffee). In the long term, alcohol abuse can also lead to addiction, mental health problems and digestive issues.
Of course, if you want to drink when hanging out with friends, go for it, but our advice is to drink responsibly and in moderation, because too much alcohol can cause big problems, and could bring a premature end to the studies you’ve worked so hard for.
One of the biggest challenges college students face is mental health issues. College can be a really stressful time for some people, especially when you first move out of your family home. Although it’s exciting take your first steps into the big wide world, it can also be difficult to adjust to your new surroundings, and it’s easy to feel isolated or alone when you are separated from your family. On top of all that, college studies can be demanding, which makes maintaining a healthy mind essential to ensure your college success.
Mediation can help you with this. Many students report that meditation helps them to improve their focus towards their studies, manage the general stresses of being away from home and deal with anxiety and depression. Meditation is recommended by many doctors as a great way of treating and preventing mental health issues. It may feel a little strange at first, but there are hundreds of videos on YouTube that will help you to get to grips with meditation and find out how to get started.
But remember, if you do feel you are struggling mentally with the stresses of college life, always seek help and advice. Whether this is from the school counselor, a friend or a family member – a problem shared is a problem halved!
Hopefully, these tips will help you to complete your studies happily and healthily. Good luck with your college adventures!