General Question

Hobbes's avatar

Am I eating well enough?

Asked by Hobbes (7355points) September 24th, 2008

I’ve just started college, and it turns out that the provided food is better than high-school swill, but only marginally so. The cafeteria food is covered in grease and soaked in fat, so as a result, I eat a lot less than I used to.

My daily diet is usually:

A bowl of whole-wheat cereal
A salami, swiss, lettuce, and onion sandwich on whole wheat bread.
Blueberries and Raspberries from the nearby co-op (though I’ve just run out).
A Peach Yogurt
A Bran muffin

This is occasionally supplemented by an apple, a banana, and other forms of meat, but that’s pretty much it.

Looking at it now, that really doesn’t seem like a lot (and I seem like a health freak). Is it enough in terms of quantity and quality? Am I getting enough vitamins, enough protein? If not, what should I add?

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17 Answers

shilolo's avatar

More protein and vegetables seem to be in order… Try tuna sandwiches, or some more nuts and throw in a salad here and there (plus some cooked veges, if you can stomach it). Still, for a college student, it seems better than average. Most students survive on pizza, soda and beer, supplemented by the occasional Ramen noodles meal.

beccalynnx's avatar

i certainly agree with shilolo, it does seem much better than the average college students.

i’m not even quite sure what kinda of salami you are eating, but most salamis are very high in fat and low in protein. try lean meats, chicken, tuna, et cetera.

and definitely a few more veggies and fruits (fresh is best.) kudos on your daily menu, though! you are being very wise with whole wheats and fresh fruits and dairy.

cak's avatar

I haven’t gone through and added thing up, but it doesn’t seem like you are getting enough. Salami, though, is really something you should avoid. There are much better choices…turkey, chicken…but salami, it’s something you should avoid.

I don’t know the “counts” on the labels of the food you are eating, but a simple guideline is the food pyramid.

I just saw the salami and that is the one thing I know that you should try to replace!

cak's avatar

it does sound like you are doing WAY better than I did in college, great job! :)

augustlan's avatar

More protein! Other than that, sounds like you’re doing great.

cyndyh's avatar

You’re getting almost no vegetables. Lettuce doesn’t really count for much, so for vegetables you only have -onion. If you tried to add a spinach salad with carrots, fresh broccoli, cucumbers, ...really load it with veggies. It sounds like you’re getting enough fruits. If you get in the habit of doing that at least once a week and then add a vegetable soup now and then you’ll be doing a whole lot better.

sundayBastard's avatar

research veganism. you feel and look better plus you can eat well on a student’s budget.

greylady's avatar
Here is a site you can look at to see what should be on your plate, and in what proportions. you don’t say if you are overwt, or not, or how active you are. It looks to me like you are not getting enough calories, but add a serving or 2 of protein to one or two meals a day, and a couple servings of vegetables (variety), and see if you don’t have more energy. Don’t skimp on the protein as your brain needs it!

cooksalot's avatar

You can check the Sparks People Site. They have a nutrition tracker that is free. Will that help?

deaddolly's avatar

my daughter’s in college and has become a Subway junkie. Try some of those…for healthier variety. And take vitamins.

Darwin's avatar

One big clue is are you losing weight? Or are you feeling fatigued? If so, then definitely you are not eating enough.

You could try replacing the salami (at least most days) with low-fat protein choices such as turkey or smoked turkey or even lean ham. If you have access to it there is a lunch meat called “Lebanon Balogna” which is not related to regular balogna at all. It is low fat and has a lovely smoky, vinegary taste. It comes from Lebanon, Pennsylvania, and is closer to a form of summer sausage.

Have you considered an occasional stir fry? Lots of nice veg, some lean meat or tofu, and some rice? Brown rice would have more nutrients but a little white rice never hurt anyone. Soups that are broth-based and heavy on the vegetables can be a good choice, too.

And if you aren’t really a fan of animal protein, don’t forget the good old student standby of rice and beans. The combination contains a nice amount of protein and also has a lot of fiber in it.

And as others have said, throw in a vitamin pill, possibly one with calcium in it to make sure you are getting enough, add a bit more protein of some sort, and up the vegetable amounts, and you should be doing fine.

Hobbes's avatar

Thanks for the great responses everyone! Cut the salami, more proteins and veggies and vitamin pills, basically? Are all lettuces worthless, by the way, or just iceberg? I swear this college is going to make me vegetarian… I don’t trust the meat at all…

Just a little more info: I’m male, 6’ 0’’ and weigh 155–160 lbs. I’m generally not too active, though I do a fair amount around in my 3-hour PE credit class twice a week. The college is essentially in the middle of nowhere – there’s a co-op nearby but my budget is limited so I can only visit it once in a while.

Darwin's avatar

The dark-leaved lettuces, such as Romaine, have some redeeming value, but iceberg is basically fiber and water.

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shilolo's avatar

@papa0so. I thoroughly reviewed the website you linked to. First, although they list a bibliography of >50 papers “supporting” their work, there is actually no scientific basis for using DNA tests to determine which vitamins or nutrients are required for an individual person. In fact, there is hardly any data to support vitamin supplements at all, save for circumstances where someone is actually deficient in said vitamin. Second, even if they determine what genetic polymorphisms you (or anyone) might have, it is a leap of faith to say that they can connect it to which vitamins or minerals you might need. Third, of all their references, there isn’t a single one showing a clinical trial demonstrating any sort of benefit (let alone something simple like a response to “treatment”) for this approach.

So, in conclusion, this isn’t science, its voodoo nutrition based on pseudoscience, at best. A true waste of money.

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