Living on campus is great, but it can also be unhealthy. We are surrounded by so many restaurants, and it makes it so easy to gear towards eating fast food all the time. There is a solution if you are looking to have a healthy lifestyle while living on campus. It is called meal prepping.
What’s meal prep?!
Meal prep is when you make healthy meals in advance to help you track what you eat, so you don’t have the urges to go for fast food or junk food. Also knowing that as a college student we can get very busy and prefer something fast. Meal prepping is also convenient as you can prep for up to a week and this helps cut down time from having to go out and buy food or trying to cook a meal, and you don’t have much time to do so.
How can you meal prep?
You can meal prep healthy meals once a week for lunch and dinner. They are simple, easy meals which is what we need since we are always busy and on the go.
We have a simple, yet delicious recipe you can do right in your dorm. This meal is healthy but fulfilling because you get the right amount of protein and vegetables. We have all the ingredients listed below along with the directions to start your meal prep. Now don’t be afraid to substitute and make it your own.
So, for the meal you will need:
- 1 lb of chicken breast
- 2 bell peppers
- 1 head of broccoli speared into pieces or buy them already cut.
- 1 cup or a small bag of sweet peas
- Brown, quinoa or Jasmine rice (rice is optional, but you can pair it with your meal)
First, cut the chicken, bell peppers and broccoli into pieces. Second, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Then spread a tablespoon of olive oil in a pan and add the chicken and veggies on the pan and mix it with a little salt and pepper or any seasoning of your choice. You will then put it in the oven for 20 minutes. Take it out and mix it again and then let it cook for another 10 minutes. For the rice that is optional, you can cook 2 cups or as much as you need and separate them into container proportions.
So, what are the benefits of meal prepping?
Meal prepping has many benefits, and they are mostly beneficial to college students and here is why. Meal prep can help you save money by preventing you from buying food at fast food restaurants every day. Another great benefit is that it ultimately saves you a lot of time throughout the week. You’ll have more time study and maybe enough time to make it to class. It can also help you with weight control if that is one of your concerns.
It’s been shown that meal prep is beneficial to losing and controlling weight because you get to decide the ingredients you use and the portion size. So, yes it does contribute to having an overall balanced healthy diet because we all know when we started our college career, it is very easy to get into some bad habits and eat unhealthily and yet it is harder to get out of the bad habit and trying to feel healthy and most of the time to get back into shape.
We already stress enough with exams, work, classes along with all the factors you can think of in college, but meal prep helps reduce your stress because you avoid trying to make last minute decisions on what to eat or if you can eat because you don’t have enough time to make something or buy something.
Meal prepping is the new way of college living, and you can get started with a simple recipe that’s provided at the top. Maybe you can create some of your recipes and share it with your friends so that you can meal prep with others. It can only start with you and now that you know the benefits and have a better understanding of what meal prepping is you can get started.