Abigail Yarrison ’21, Editor in Chief

Healthy living can be difficult in college. We’ve all heard of the “freshman fifteen” and the inevitable college dorm snack drawer filled with Ramen and Kraft mac and cheese. When living away from home, it is easy to neglect our physical, mental, and/or spiritual health, but having a healthy lifestyle is important to our success in the classroom, on the sports field, and in our relationships. Here are some simple ways you can stay healthy during college:

Healthy Eating

Source: brabpodcast.com

Eating well is the backbone of healthy living. Healthy foods provide your body with the nutrients it needs to perform at its best. Vitamins and minerals found in fruits and vegetables like magnesium, potassium, iron, and Vitamin C are important for your body to function properly. The dining hall offers healthy options like fresh fruit, yogurt, salad bars, and homemade granola. Try combinations like fruit in yogurt or cucumbers and tomatoes in ranch for custom healthy snacks!

If you’re feeling fatigued or dizzy, you might be low on iron. Try adding chickpeas to your salad, enjoying a turkey sandwich, or oatmeal to boost your iron content. Cramping and nausea might indicate low potassium. Drink a glass of milk or orange juice with breakfast, grab a banana between classes, or add some potatoes to your plate for dinner.

Healthy foods get a bad rap for being boring or unappetizing, but did you know that dark chocolate is full of healthy antioxidants and minerals? Lean red meat is a great source of protein, zinc, and iron. Pure honey is a natural sweetener that lowers inflammation. Avocado and peanut butter are high in fat, but the healthy kind that is linked to having a healthy heart and low cholesterol levels. Many healthy foods are disguised as sugary or high in fat, but are actually beneficial for your diet.


Getting enough exercise is also important for living a healthy life. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), “adults need to do two types of physical activity each week to improve their health–aerobic activity and muscle strengthening.” Keeping our bodies in shape is as important as healthy eating for maximum performance. It improves the flow of oxygen to our muscles, tissues, and cardiovascular system. It has also been proven to improve mood and energy!

Stretching keeps your muscles flexible and strong. When you stretch before exercising it lowers your chance of pulling a muscle and getting cramps. After sitting in classrooms and at desks all day, simple stretches like lunges, downward dog, spinal twists, and quad stretches can improve your posture and relieve stiffness.

The CDC recommends 30 minutes of exercise a day. Although it sounds like a lot there are tons of easy ways to stay active in our busy lives. Jog on the way to or from class. Take a walk in the morning or before dinner. Do some jumping jacks, sit ups, or pushups in your dorm room. Join the dance club, participate in the Pray and Be Fit event, sign up for the basketball tournament or intermural sports. There are so many ways to keep your body in tip top shape while on campus.


Night life is at its peak during college. When hanging with friends and doing school work, we often loose track of time and have to sneak back into our dorm rooms at 1am without waking the roommate. However, sleeping is very important for our physical and mental health. The CDC recommends that for adults age 18-60 seven or more hours of sleep each day is healthy.

Waking up refreshed, ready to face the day, is a great feeling. Sleeping gives our bodies’ time to repair and restore our muscles and energy. Sleep deprivation makes it difficult for our minds to cope with daily stressors, and reduces the capabilities of our immune system. That’s why when we don’t get enough sleep, we often feel gloomy, irritable, and maybe even sick. Spilling coffee on our clean shirt might even trigger a breakdown. Sleep deprivation makes it harder to concentrate on our studies, so staying up all night to study for that big test might not be the best idea.

There are a few things you can do to reduce sleep deprivation and fall asleep faster. Manage your time so you don’t have to stay up late doing homework. Make sure you avoid large meals and caffeine before bedtime. Try reading at night instead of scrolling on your phone to reduce blue light stimulation and make it easier to fall asleep.

Making Time for Yourself

We all have busy lives. From academics, to work, to socializing there’s a lot on a college student’s plate. You need to make sure you’re taking breaks from all the different activities of your week to spend time relaxing with yourself. Sometimes people see “me time” as unproductive or unimportant when in actuality it is quite beneficial for your mental health.

Spending time with yourself has multiple benefits. First of all, it gives you time to unwind and destress. It is easy to be overwhelmed with the requirements of the day, so taking some time to relax and lower your stress levels can do wonders. Second, me time greatly improves your overall well-being. Taking time to do things you enjoy can make you happier, more positive, and more content. Third, you come to know yourself better. Taking care of yourself is your most important job in life. The more time you spend with yourself, the better you will understand your body’s needs and desires.

Me time comes in many forms. It can be taking a walk, reading a book, cooking, or painting your nails. It could be drawing, treating yourself to lunch, or watching a movie. Anything that you enjoy doing and that improves your well-being. Remember, quality is better than quantity when it comes to spending time with yourself.

Source: missrachelb.com

Spiritual Health

Last but never least, spiritual health is also important for leading a healthy life. Spirituality isn’t just religion, it can also be connecting with your inner self, deeply understanding what you need.

Being spiritually healthy helps us understand the world around us. We come to a deeper understand of our beliefs and values, allowing us to make choices based on compassion, love, and fulfillment rather than desire. Having a strong spirituality can also improve your feelings of self-worth and self-acceptance.

Keeping up our spiritual health is as easy as reflecting daily on our choices, being grateful, and working to improve our character. Practicing your religion on campus is also important for keeping your values and morals aligned in an often conflicting environment.