A good nutrition plan can help students maintain or develop a healthy diet while in college.
For both meals and snacks, you'll want a balance of complex carbs, lean proteins and healthy fats. Choose foods that come from food groups, such as grains, meat, fruit vegetable, dairy and fat. Use the chart below to see how you can find a better balance in your diet.
Body’s preferred source of fuel. Should make up 55-65% of caloric intake. Broken down to glucose for energy and stored as glycogen in muscles and liver. The ability to sustain prolonged vigorous exercise is directly related to initial levels of muscle glycogen.
Whole grain breads and pastas; brown rice, high fiber cereal (aim for at least 5g fiber and protein), sweet potatoes, quinoa, fruit, milk, beans, vegetables
Candy bars, candy, chips, white bread, biscuits, sugary pastries, pop-tarts, doughnuts, sugary cereals, fruit "drink", soda, French fries
Source of fuel and stored energy. Should make up ~25% of caloric intake. Promotes heart health, brain health and reduces muscular pain and inflammation. Adds satisfaction and flavor to food. Transports fat soluble vitamins. Provides insulation and cushion for joints. Precursor to hormones and building blocks of the cell wall.
Olive oil, canola oil, almonds, walnuts, pecans, seeds, peanut butter, almond butter, sunflower butter, avocado (guacamole), hummus, tuna, salmon
Chips, fried foods, high-fat dairy such as butter, cheese and cream. Candy bars, desserts
Source of fuel after carbs and fat ~20% of caloric intake. Structural proteins form most of the solid material in the human body such as hair, muscles, tendons and skin. Functional proteins help carry out activities and functions in the body such as transporting oxygen and allowing muscles to contract.
Lean meat such as loin, round, roast, flank steak; 93% lean ground beef or turkey; lean deli meat. Eggs. Chicken and turkey without skin; all fish and shellfish; all beans such as black, kidney, pinto, soy; low fat dairy such as skim milk, low fat cheese, cottage cheese, yogurt, Greek yogurt
High fat cuts of meat such as ribs, ribeye, chicken wings, bacon, sausage, pepperoni, bologna, fried meat, cheese