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    Healthy eating

    When you come to university it may be the first time you've lived away from home and been fully independent. To have enough energy to study and enjoy student life to the full you need to eat regularly and healthily.

    • A guide to healthy eating

      • What are the advantages of good nutrition?

        - Have more energy

        - Feel better about your eating 

        - Have a better work out 

        - Add variety to your meals and make them more interesting 

        - Decreases constipation 

        - Prevent unnecessary weight gain 

        - Avoid getting sick with colds and minor illnesses 

        - Prevent health problems in the future

      • What does a healthy balanced life really mean?

        - Eat regularly and base your meals on starchy foods

        - Eat lots of fruit and vegetables 

        - Eat more fish 

        - Eat a wide variety of foods 

        - Try to eat less salt 

        - Cut down on saturated fats and sugars 

        - Get active and try to be a healthy weight 

        - Drink plenty of water 

        - Don't skip breakfast
      • Get organised

        - With some planning you can eat cheap and healthy meals on a tight budget

        - Make a shopping list before you go and shop 

        - Maybe shop and cook with a friend who is more experienced than you in the kitchen 

        - Watch your waste - when you buy foods that go off quickly, plan your meals carefully so it gets eaten or frozen straight away

        - Vary your meals otherwise you will get bored of eating and cooking the same things over and over again

      • No time to cook or can't cook?

        - Shop at the local markets for discounted fruit, vegetables and meat bargains

        - Buy in bulk - it's usually cheaper. You can freeze these and use as required 

        - Use cheaper cuts of meat for curries and casseroles and add extra vegetables and beans to make the meal go further. Trim off visible fat before you start

        - Work out how much you are going to spend on food each week and stick to it

        - Go back to basics - processed food is expensive because you are paying for the processing! It's much cheaper and often more nutritious to buy basic ingredients and make your own meals

        - Compare prices - remember to shop around. You'll often save by doing this 

        - Don't be seduced by special offers - if you're not going to use it - why buy it! However watch out for supermarket specials of staple foods and stock up on them when they are cheap. Items such as pasta and rice have a long shelf life

      • What could you have in your food cupboard?

        You need to stock your cupboard and fridge with easy to cook ingredients. Suggestions of meals include:

        - Soups - easy to make and nutritious especially if you add a lot of vegetables (fresh frozen on canned). You can use your own herbs and spices to canned or packet soups and even add your leftovers to it! 

        - Pasta - it's quick and easy to cook and prepare. Keep pasta sauces in your cupboards and add your own flavours, vegetables etc to it 

        - Rice - mix cooked rice with leftover vegetables and meat 

        - Bread is a good source of carbohydrate. Choose wholemeal bread rather than white as it is more nutritious and filling (but it can cause wind and bloating) 

        - Potatoes - Baking potatoes are great value and yet versatile 

        - Porridge oats - you can buy 1kg bag of porridge for under £1 and it's a really filling meal to start the day with. You could add some fresh or dried fruit for variety 

        - Beans and lentils - cheap to buy and a small amount goes far! Canned varieties can make a quick and nutritious addition to soups and stews. Lentils and beans can be used as a main meal with vegetables added. Baked beans on toast is a classic and is actually a very healthy dish, especially if you use wholemeal bread, and low fat spread 

        - Vegetables and fruit - can add vegetables to curries, soups, stir fries. Canned and frozen vegetables can be used as additions to last minute meals. Fruit is excellent for a quick nutritious snack. We should be eating at least 5 pieces of fruit and vegetables per day. Avoid over cooking your vegetables as most of the vitamins end up in the water. Or use that water for your gravy

        - Condiments - add taste and flavour to your cooking. Keep a selection of dried herbs, spices, curry powder, vinegars, tomato sauce, soy sauce and stock cubes in your cupboard 

        - Tinned tomatoes - these can form the base of all sorts of sauces, are low in fat and count as a portion of your fruit and vegetables 

        - Chicken - chicken seems to be of better value if you buy in larger quantities. If you've got a freezer you could chop it up and freeze it in small amounts 

        - Eggs - are easy to cook and versatile 

        - Canned fish - Mackerel, sardines and pilchards are good sources of protein and omega 3 fatty acids 

        - Milk is full of calcium and vitamins and is healthy drink at any time of the day. Choose semi skimmed or skimmed milk for a lower fat option

      • Study & exams healthy eating

        Healthy eating is especially important when you are under stress. When you are rushing to meet deadlines it's easy to skip meals and forget about healthy eating. However this is the time your body needs good nutrition the most. Remember to drink plenty of fluids and take some water into your exams. For further Information on healthy eating look up:www.eatwell.gov.uk.

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