Yes, it is real. I know a couple of people personally who the Freshman 15 has caught hold of, and I went to school with a few girls (and guys) who also fell victim to it their first two semesters of college. The reason is simple: starting college is a huge change, and you’re on your own for the very first time. Living away at school was the first time in my life that I felt I had the most responsibility and pressure on me all at once. I had a lot of assignments due on the same days, two tests a week to study for, a part-time job, a roommate to get along with and new friends to see… hello, it is college after all!
The first week of my college career I lived at my university. I was so overwhelmed that I gained five pounds in the first week, living off campus food, Easy Mac and Ramen Noodles. I really didn’t see how I could make the time to prepare healthier options and on top of everything else I had to do, work out! But after feeling bloated, tired and genuinely crappy, I soon found ways to change my eating habits and inactive lifestyle, dodging the Freshman 15.
S W A P S N A C K S
Snacking is very important and you’ll be tempted to do a lot of in college. The good news is, you’re supposed to have two to three a day. The catch? The nutrition experts who suggest this aren’t talking about traditional junk food snacks like candy, chocolate and chips. They’re talking about protein-filled foods without high fat or calorie content. Here’s four main easy and inexpensive swaps that I made: