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College is pretty fantastic. You’re on your own for the first time – new friends, potentially a whole new city, no curfew, no one to really make any personal rules for you – you can do whatever you want (within reason) without being under that parental iron thumb. However, such freedom doesn’t come without drawbacks – cooking all of your own meals, remembering to do your laundry without a gentle motherly reminder, grocery shopping for yourself…not easy skills to keep up with while trying not to drown under that mountain of schoolwork.

For me, that freedom included going crazy with food. I didn’t have a convenient kitchen in my dorm room, so I mostly ate out or at the cafeteria, which didn’t offer the greatest options. To my delight, there was a Dairy Queen within two miles of campus, a Chick-fil-a within five, and a much-loved local ice cream place within WALKING DISTANCE. As you can imagine, I didn’t stand a chance. So, even though I was on the school’s tennis team, working out about five days a week, I still gained weight. I guess I couldn’t quite force my mind to accept the fact that I couldn’t eat ice cream four days a week without feeling the consequences. However, when I got home for the summer, I knew I had to get real. So I talked to my aunt (who is a registered dietitian) and we came up with a few things that I could do to change my college eating habits. These tips are pretty easy and I never felt like I was depriving myself, plus I learned how to cook a little bit – not too shabby, right? 🙂

5 TIPS TO FIGHT THE FRESHMAN FIFTEEN
(1) Hydrate. This seems pretty standard, but water consumption is very important. If you’re a soda drinker, try to replace at least one soda a day with a glass of water. If you’re a very quick eater (like me) and eat so quickly you don’t even realize how full you are until you’ve consumed half your pantry, it helps to drink a full glass of water before every meal. It’ll make you feel more full and cut your calorie intake.

(2) Participate in some form of exercise 3-4 times a week for at least 30 minutes. This could be a walk, jogging, skateboarding, roller skating, basketball, you name it – just get out there. Bonus: it’ll clear your head, and make studying seem like less a chore, too. Also, it’s totally acceptable to do jumping jacks, high knees, ab workouts, wall sits, burpees etc in the dorm room when snowed in/feeling lazy. I’ve done it. Try for 25 each of the high intensity stuff like crunches and mountain climbers three times in a row, then a 30 second wall sit. You’ll be knackered.

(3) SLEEP. GUYS. YOU GOTTA SLEEP. I know I sound like a parent and that it’s way more interesting to stay up watching Netflix with your people, because I 110% still do this and I’m in grad school with a full time job and apparently like to make life harder on myself, but eight hours is basically necessary. If you start slacking for more than a few nights in a row, you’re gonna start feeling it – and you’re probably going to find yourself reaching for that pick-me-up chocolate bar a few more times than you would had you gotten a solid night’s sleep. Plus, your metabolism will be sleepy, too – meaning you won’t be able to burn OFF those chocolate bars without a little extra exercise. Sleep is important.

(4) Treat yo’self. Just do it in moderation. If you deprive yourself totally, you’ll break down and eat half a cake by yourself because you’ll probably have a bad day, get fed up, and need cake in your face right that second. It’s okay to have dessert – just don’t do it after every meal. Also, those random Oreos snagged throughout the day add up.

(5) Learn to cook for yourself 🙂 It’s fun, I promise. And, as this amazing website shows, it’s totally possible to make easy, healthy things in a microwave. I wish I had had THAT list when I was a freshman in college…

And now, to wrap things up, I’ve included a little recipe of my own.

Avocado Toast + Over-Hard Egg, inspired by the wonderful brunch restaurant First Watch. There’s one in downtown Clayton, literally five minutes from campus. Do yourself a favor and check them out!!

What you need:
1 piece of whole grain or 100% whole wheat bread
1 ripe avocado
1 egg
handful shredded cheese of your choice
olive oil
garlic (for seasoning) or garlic powder

For the egg:
IMG_3560
1. Heat 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. I usually just eyeball the amount of olive oil.
2. Crack egg and carefully let it slide into the pan. You can crack it into a bowl in case you’re afraid of shell shards, then pour it into the pan from there. The key is to NOT SHOW THE EGG YOUR FEAR.
3. Reduce heat to low. Sprinkle a smidge of minced garlic or garlic powder onto the egg as it cooks, along with the handful of shredded cheese.
4. Cook for about 5 minutes, until whites have solidified and yolks have started to thicken.
5. Flip egg with a spatula and cook for another minute or so. It’s really up to your personal preference how fried you want your egg to be – I like my yolks completely solid, like a boiled egg, but some people prefer them runnier.

For the avocado toast:
avo toast
1. Cut avocado in half. You can save the other half for a later meal 🙂
2. Toast bread to your preferred level of crispy.
3. Spread half of the avocado onto the toast. Season with lemon juice and/or garlic powder if you like and enjoy 🙂

You can eat them separately, or throw that egg on top of the toast and go to flavortown. Here’s the beautiful final product:

avo toast + egg

I hope you guys enjoy these tips. The Freshman Fifteen can fight, but it won’t win. You got this!

Keep moving forward.

xoxo

Jess

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Anna

Ten Things I’m Thankful for

by Anna on November 21, 2016

in College Life

Thanksgiving is just one week away!  It’s probably my second- or third-favorite holiday; I can’t decide between it and Easter.  Anyway, now is a great time of the year to count your blessings, so to speak.  I know it’s nearly the end of the semester, you’re probably exhausted, and you’re looking forward to some time with family…but in these busy moments, I think it’s especially important to look at yourself with a positive outlook.  In a world of negativity and brokenness, we, Fontbonne as a community, can spread some counter-feelings of optimism, respect, and encouragement.  And what’s a great way to start on that track?  Look inward, outward, and all around you, and see what’s good in your life.  I’d like to encourage you to make a list of your own in the next few weeks; maybe it would be appropriate for in between studying for finals…a nice way to take a breath, relax, and appreciate everything a little more fully.  It can be as short and simple as you like!

So here’s my “top 10” list of things I’m thankful for, in no particular order, by the way!

  1. Fontbonne:  I love the faculty, staff, my fellow students, the opportunities to pursue one’s passion and “serve the dear neighbor”, and the entire atmosphere in general.  Even on days when I’m really tired and just not feeling too upbeat, my mood ends up brightening by being on campus, going to class, and knowing I’m surrounded by wonderful, supportive people.
  2. My family & friends:  My parents, brother, godparents, and other friends (young and old) bring me so much joy.  They’re patient, kind, loving, encouraging, funny, and genuinely interested in hearing about the latest topic or subject I’ve covered in class.  I may not have a huge social web, but the relationships I have with my relatives and companions are deep and permanent.
  3. My horses:  Dear, sweet little Pearl-baby and Blondie-girl, who have been so cooperative and easygoing about my lack of time for them since school started.  They’re happy to just be groomed, petted, hugged, loved on, and told how much they mean to me.  Owning a horse is so much more than riding; in fact, it’s really quite irrelevant to me.  I think it’s way more important to have a strong relationship, built on trust and respect, than a surface level “hop on and ride off into the sunset” sort of thing.
  4. Good health:  I’m grateful for the ability to exercise every day and not be compromised in any way by injuries or illnesses.  My first semester at Fontbonne is nearly over, and I have not gotten so much as a sneeze, which I’m pretty proud of…especially considering how little sleep I’ve recently been getting!
  5. Freedom:  I’m thankful for all of the men and women who have served or are currently serving in our military, protecting and preserving my rights.  I’m really glad for my, your, and everyone else’s ability to voice their opinions and beliefs.  Now more than ever, we need to ensure this right does not get lost or suppressed for anyone; but even more importantly, we need to be civil and respectful when speaking with someone who may hold a different set of beliefs.
  6. Faith:  This ties into #5 above (freedom).  Every Sunday morning, I can go to church with my family to experience communion and fellowship with other believers.  I can be refreshed for the coming week, forgiven of my sins, receive the Lord’s Supper, and encouraged to live a life of grace and love.  My right to worship is not infringed upon, and for that I am appreciative.
  7. Sunrises & sunsets:  For all the darkness and gloom surrounding winter, you have to admit we have some of the most spectacular sunrises and sunsets.  Colors of red, orange, golden, blue, pink, purple, and more set the sky on fire and always make me hopeful for the day ahead.  In that quiet stillness, there is peace to be found.
  8. Home sweet home:  I have a roof over my head, heat and air-conditioning for all seasons, abundant clothing, running water, electricity, Internet service, and so many other creature comforts.  We take these for granted far too much.  Remember that there are millions of people all around the world who do not and may never experience these everyday conveniences.
  9. Food:  Once again, just how many people do you think do not have access to quality food and water like we do?  I’m not trying to shame you for enjoying the bountiful feast your mom or grandma prepares for Thanksgiving…I think it’s one of the best times to come together as a family for fellowship and yummy goodness.  But maybe after that final piece of pumpkin pie, consider volunteering for a food pantry or donating to a charity that seeks to improve the lives of people who aren’t in the same fortunate position we are.
  10. The Future:  I’m thankful to be able to pursue my studies in dietetics and history, two passions of mine, and eventually help people live their lives to the fullest.  I’m thankful for classes that challenge, push, and mold me into a version of myself I never dreamed I would be.  I’m also thankful for the opportunity to share my musings about the future with all who read this blog…you.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Blessings,

~Anna

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If you’re like me, you’re in a rush in the morning to get everything together for classes that day then, drive to school if you are a commuter.  I also have a difficult time taking time out of the morning to sit down and eat breakfast.  Recently, I found a great way to help me get breakfast in the morning, it’s bake muffins! Muffins are so easy to grab and eat or take on the go.  I make the muffins on the weekend and they usually last me all week or more depending how many I make.  With muffins, you can put practically anything you want in them!  I found a recipe that includes blueberries, Greek yogurt, oatmeal, and other ingredients I had already! You can make them your own by adding gluten free flour if you have a Celiac disease, bananas, nuts, the possibilities are endless!  Try out your own recipe and let me know how it turns out! Bon Appetit!

My favorite muffin recipe:

http://seeaimeecook.blogspot.com/2013/07/power-muffins-blueberries-oatmeal-greek.html

 

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It’s a bittersweet time of the year! As students, we have finals to study for and our schedules start filling up during the month of December… but, on a brighter note, the end of the semester is near and so is the winter holiday 🙂
Since finals and some level of stress are in students’ inevitable futures, why not learn how to best cope with them?
Here are three practices to do while studying for finals:

1) Roll with the chaos. Finals are going to happen whether you’re pulling your hair out or calm and collected. Which sounds better? Keep a positive perspective in mind if you become negative about finals week. Get enough sleep, eat regularly and be sure to make time for yourself over the weekend so when you do study, it’s more tolerable!

2) Eat balanced. Sorry, as a dietetics student I had to put this one. Although I know part of it is likely a placebo effect, I tend to eat what I think of as “brain foods” before finals. Eggs keep me fuller longer and contain choline which is good for cognitive function**. Therefore, I like to switch my morning oatmeal to eggs during finals week. Walnuts, flaxseeds, chia seeds and salmon have omega-3s, which fight inflammation and has been linked to brain health*, so I incorporate these foods in my meals and snacks if possible. Lastly, if you’re a coffee drinker- be sure to drink your coffee this weekend! The caffeine will help keep you alert and focused. If you don’t drink caffeine, just remember to stay hydrated! Dehydration can lead to a feeling of sluggishness aka brain fog!

3) Take frequent breaks. You might be tempted to study for hours at a time, but you will actually retain more information if you take a break at least once per hour! Stand up, make coffee/tea, have a snack, take a walk or do a mindless Buzzfeed quiz… Whatever it is… Give that brain a rest! You deserve it. One easy way to schedule breaks is to set an alarm on your phone, that way you don’t have to watch the clock which can be a huge distraction to effective studying.

Currently taking a break from studying? Read Buzzfeed’s 33 Stages of Finals Week 🙂 Good luck to everyone on finals & Happy Holidays!

References:
*http://www.mayoclinic.org/drugs-supplements/omega-3-fatty-acids-fish-oil-alpha-linolenic-acid/background/hrb-20059372
**http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2782876/

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Coo-coo for Coconut Oil

by Alumni Posts September 21, 2015

In the past year there has been a lot of hype around “coconut” infused items. While I admit to being a fan of coconut-y things like coconut yogurt and the versatile coconut oil, I want to emphasis that just because something has the word coconut on it- doesn’t mean it’s inherently the healthiest thing for […]

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Why Fontbonne, huh?

by Fontbonne University September 21, 2015

I think I’m becoming what you would call a professional student. I went to college straight out of high school, got my bachelor’s degree from UMSL in communications 4 years later, then continued to go back and take random classes because I still had no idea what I wanted to do with my life. Eventually […]

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The Countdown Begins!

by Alumni Posts July 27, 2015

Only one month left until school starts back up again. For me, fortunately it will be my last semester 😀 For dietetics students, our education does not end with a 4-year degree. After graduation the goal is often to land an internship or graduate school (or both) and then become a registered dietitian working in […]

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North Carolina Trip

by Alumni Posts July 27, 2015

On Tuesday I caught an early flight from Raleigh back to Saint Louis. I was in Raleigh, NC for a week visiting my boyfriend’s family and spent some time exploring the area. I was pleasantly surprised with how much I loved Raleigh! The city had a small-town vibe with the excitement and entertainment of a […]

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Protein Pancakes!

by Alumni Posts June 29, 2015

Hey everyone! This week I’d like to introduce my new favorite thing to make for breakfast (and sometimes even for dinner!) – Protein Pancakes! To many of you out there that may have tried protein pancakes in the past that left a bad taste in your mouth… I encourage you to give these puppies another […]

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National Nutrition Month has hit Fontbonne!!

by Alumni Posts March 6, 2015

This week marks the first week of March! You know what that means?! Well… yes, March Madness… BUT! Also, National Nutrition Month®!!   National Nutrition Month® is sponsored by The Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics to help promote awareness of the importance of a healthy diet and to advocate for the profession of dietetics. This […]

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Students writing for Real Life at Fontbonne are paid a small fee for each post by the university.