Skip to main content
Health Promotion Specialist

Two plates of food
Having regular, balanced meals and snacks ensures your energy levels are at their best and you are getting the fuel you need for your brain.

We all have busy schedules and finding the “time” to eat well can be part of the challenge. I often hear, “But I don’t have time” or “If I have a chance I will try to grab something.” Despite a busy lifestyle, eating well will help you maintain your energy and your brain power so you can succeed.

To start off your day, and this article, let’s talk about breakfast. How many times have you heard “It is the most important meal of the day?” Studies have shown that those who eat breakfast have improved concentration and memory. In addition, people who have breakfast get the energy they need to kick start their day and are less likely to overeat later in the day. How about a yogurt parfait? Sound too fancy? Well if you have a portable coffee mug, try filling it with low-fat yogurt and any chopped fruit (a banana works great) the night before. In the morning you can add a high fiber cereal for crunch, not to mention fiber, iron and B-vitamins, and you are on your way! You want to aim for high fiber carbohydrates and some source of protein at breakfast and 3 of the 4 food groups. If instant oatmeal is a favourite, why not try making it with milk instead of water and adding chopped nuts or fruit?

After a balanced breakfast you want to make sure you have a meal or snack every 3 to 4 hours. The best way to make this happen is by having snacks with you at all times. A great tip for students is to make your own trail mix. Next time you are in the bulk food section of your grocery store stock up on your favorites: nuts, sunflower seeds, pretzels, dried cranberries or raisins. You can keep your trail mix in a reusable container or a zip top bag to have on hand. It’s a perfect snack that provides lasting energy to get you through until your next meal.

Finally, what about those meals at the end of the day? Cooking doesn’t have to be gourmet. Make it fun with a group of friends on the weekend and make a big batch of pasta sauce or chili. These are items that are perfect for freezing in individual portions and can come in handy after that long and busy day or to take with you for lunch. Lastly, we know that the majority of SFU students (88% to be exact), are not getting their daily recommended servings of vegetables and fruit. For males this is 8 to 10 and for females this number is 7 to 8. Sound like a lot? Consider this, each ½ cup of 100% fruit juice counts as a serving or ½ cup of chopped fruit or veggies or a small piece of fruit. It all adds up over the course of the day. So why not pack an apple, orange or some baby carrot sticks? Even canned fruit like applesauce or a dried fruit bar can be part of your daily servings. You might want to keep a bowl of fruit near where you study or work. If you see it, you are more likely to eat it.

Having regular, balanced meals and snacks ensures your energy levels are at their best and you are getting the fuel you need for your brain. We all have goals in terms of our school and work life but we might not realize that achieving these has a lot to do with our nutrition. So why not make a few nutrition goals too and eat well to excel!

    Beyond the Blog

    Health Promotion Specialist
    visibility  33
    Dec 16, 2012

    You Might Like These... Volunteering, Community Engagement, Professional Development, Personal Development, Life Balance

    STC West Coast
    Alumnus Profile: How Crystal Kwon Advanced Her Career Through Volunteerism

    Students often overlook one important benefit of volunteerism. While students realize that scholarships and bursaries usually require community engagement, they often forget that volunteerism can also give you the edge you need after you finish your degree.

    Picture of the medicine wheel
    Career Wellness | Part One

    How do you make your career a part of your overall wellness? How do you know when this aspect of your life is out of balance, and what can you do to even things out? How do you define career wellnes?  Dave shares his thoughts on career wellness and balance in a two part series.

    A woman fast asleep
    Sleeping for Success at Work!

    The days of pulling all nighters and getting by on 2-3 hours sleep are over! Getting enough sleep is essential to ensure you can keep up with the demands of a fulltime work schedule and put forth your best performance.

    You Might Like These... Mental Health

    a bunch of cars stuck in traffic
    Feeling Stuck? Put A Halt On It!

    You know the feeling of being stuck. Whether in your personal, interpersonal, professional, or any other life, the sense of having fallen out of the groove is always similarly and markedly unpleasant. You're spinning your tires, expending lots of effort with seemingly no forward motion to thank for it. So how do you get out of this funk? Here's a simple strategy for getting "unstuck"

    Stress in Workplace? Tips for Reducing it

    It is easy to become stressed in an unfamiliar and fast-pace working environment, no matter which field you are in. Good strategies not only help you reduce your uncomfortable feeling, but also lead you to learn faster and work efficiently. I spent one year in OSI Maritime Systems as a mechanical engineering co-op student, and I have concluded 4 tips that are essential for anyone who struggling with stress at work!

    Tired Student
    The Vicious Cycle of the Contemporary College Student

    You may be stuck in a cycle familiar to many university students. Learn to recognize the signs of this cycle, and make 2017 the year you finally do that thing you said you would. It’s a new year, why not try something new?