If you are headed abroad to pursue further education, brace yourself for a syndrome that hits almost everyone – that is “freshers syndrome”. As the name suggests you are likely to add on a few pounds thanks to the changed lifestyle.
Living away form home is always a fun and exciting proposition for students, especially when it brings on abundant freedom in a different country. By freedom we don’t just mean leading life the way you want it as in study, sleep, socialize. We also mean the independence to pick what you want to eat and when. With no mommy trying top stuff vegetables down your throat, junk food often becomes the dietary resort for most. Hence the day kicks off with burgers for breakfast and ends with pizzas for dinner. While at first it may all seem fine, it does not quite have a great aftertastes specially when the pounds are on.
Fresher’s 15 in student circles, this sudden weight gain brought on by binge eating usually strikes students in their first year. The average weight gain observed is around 15 pounds, without exaggeration. Mr.X has been one of the victims and still struggling to lose the weight that he piled on then, shares a student at Warwick University.
When in doubt blame it on the fast food. University students are always busy and stressed. They eat on the go while rushing from class to class. Cafeteria food does not always taste good. Since most students cannot cook, fast food turns savoir. Ice creams, donuts, kebabs, chips and fizzy drinks are some of the popular and high calories choices.
Michigan State University student blames it on erratic eating schedules. Eating at irregular intervals, consuming high calories meals at night and skipping breakfast due to oversleeping are some of the common mistakes students make. The bad nutrition combined with lack of an exercise further aggravates the issue.
Alcohol is yet another culprit. The perpetual happy hour has a not so happy effect on the physical fitness. Alcohol contains empty calories that pile on weight without filling the stomach
All work and no play doesn’t just make students dull but fat as well. Despite availability of many fitness facilities on campus few students actually use them. Classes and project work. There goes in socializing. Something’s got to get and that is usually physical activity, shares student of University of South California.
Students will continue to overlook the consequences of such sudden changes in their dietary habits. Eating at regular intervals is the key to solving most of the problems. Load up on a handful of grapes or a small cup of cereal. Skipping breakfast is a definite no-no as it encourages binge eating through the rest of the day Try to include at least twenty minutes of workout timed in your routine – whether by walking to class or climbing stairs.
Of course situation is not all that grim. As the first year draws to an end most students turn a little wiser. Having developed better time management skills helps them incorporate some sport or increased physical activity in their routines. Also, binge eating makes way for a sensible diet plan. Burger’s and beer eventually lose their charm. The next challenge becomes losing the fresher’s fat.