College Hacks for Health: the Cafeteria

I’m willing to bet that most of y’all college kids don’t have the money eating out for every meal. That leaves you with one choice:


‘E gads! ack, no!!!’ I can here y’all saying in your Calvin and Hobbes voices.(if you have never heard of calvin and Hobbes, I suggest you Google it right now. Or no college Hacks for you!! Jk. But, seriously.)

Anyways, I have luckily narrowed down the solutions into the two different types of dining halls you will run into.

one meal per transaction

was not sure of the official name. But basically this is where you have a choice of one main item, a side, drink. And then you check out with the cashier. This is tragic, btw. But never the less. It can still be healthy. Here’s the rules:

  1. For proteins: chicken, eggs, fish, turkey. They are the leaner of the meats, and delicious
  3. for sides, avoid heavily starchy items, like mashed potatoes. This is not to say that potatoes in themselves are bad. It’s what you add to them.
  4. Avoid breads, especially white bread. Go for other carbs, like veggies.
  5. load up the salad bar. No limits here, feel free to run like the wind bullseye.

The buffet

This is my favorite type. You have more freedom to tailor your meal. All for one flat price.

Basically. Follow the same guidelines for the one meal per transaction. The only added rule is to pace yourself. This can be hard to do, since you have unlimited food at your disposal. Don’t go crazy, but don’t deny your body of essential nutrients either.


Don’t get overwhelmed! To help you better develop a habit for choosing a nutrient dense food, use myfitnesspal. screenshot_2016-09-11-08-47-26This app has the nutrition facts for thousands of different food types. It even has foods from many of the different fast food places near your college.screenshot_2016-09-11-08-47-54

If you are going to use this, do not listen to the calories. They are pretty much a sham. Just focus on the nutrients. Lime protein, calcium, etc.

I used it throughout college when I was starting my wholefoods journey.

It’s a challenge. But don’t doubt yourself! You can be healthy at college and still have fun! Use the healthy hacks to help guide you along your nutrition journey, and leave a comment with anything you’d like to see!


Published by Modern Food Explorer

Hi! Welcome to my site. I created this to share my recipes ive come up with. I love being active, and eating as healthy as possible, However I dont like how people say healthy is supposed to taste. So I spend a lot of time putting together recipes that satisfy my sweet tooth as well as my body's needs. In my free time I love to go hiking, draw, listen to music, as well as arts and crafts. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me! Sincerely, The Ginger

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