Nutrition Tips from SHAPE

Chloe Gonzales ‘20
SHAPE Contributor

This school year, the Student Health Awareness Peer Educators (SHAPE) have compiled a list of goals to accomplish at Holy Cross, with the health and wellness of the student body in mind. We aim to accomplish these goals through educational outreach around campus. For our first outreach event, we will be focusing on nutrition and emphasizing the importance of healthy eating habits for college students.

While eating at Kimball or grocery shopping, a useful reference for healthy eating is Dr. Greger’s “Daily Dozen Checklist.” This checklist lists food that we should strive to fit into our daily routine for optimal health and longevity. These include beans, fruits, cruciferous vegetables, flaxseed, grains, and nuts, among other key food groups. The checklist also specifies the importance of exercise once a day.

Oftentimes, people believe that sugars are unhealthy and should be avoided. This is not entirely true, since sugars can be incorporated into a healthy diet. Eating sugar in moderation prevents overeating and lowers cravings. Dietary Guidelines for Americans suggests that you should limit added sugar to 10% of your daily intake (about 200 calories in a 2,000 calorie diet).

While it may seem appealing or efficient, try not to rely on protein powders and other supplements as replacements for nutritious food. Instead, try a post workout snack where you consume carbs to protein in a 3:1 ratio. Ideas include peanut butter and banana on rice cakes (½ banana, 1 tbsp. peanut butter, 2 brown rice cakes), as well as yogurt and fresh berries (1 cup of plain, low-fat Greek yogurt and ½ cup berries). You can only absorb about 20-30g of protein at once. Oftentimes, you are able to get enough protein from the food you eat.

Finally, in addition to developing healthy eating habits, you should stay hydrated and well-rested. Staying hydrated improves wakefulness and drinking eight cups of water per day is highly recommended. Lack of sleep increases appetite due to hormonal imbalance, so aim to get at least eight hours of sleep each night.

The next time you’re at Kimball or cooking food for yourself, keep these tips in mind! Follow us on Instagram at @holycrossshape for regular updates on our events this year.

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