Before we left for University, we were being fed with all those unbelievable stories of how students only eat pizza, chips and pot noodles and then put on weight and become miserable. Who would believe that?

By the time we were finished with our first year, we already knew every word of it was true.

There are many reasons why students don’t eat properly and lack of time to cook is the biggest of them all.

With deadlines, lectures and evenings out, there is not much time left in the day to sit in the kitchen and watch your pans simmer. Also, fruit and vegetables, as well as fresh meat and fish, reach horrendous prices in supermarkets, way over the weekly budget most of us have.

We end up stocking up on Iceland’s mac and cheese, greasy pizzas and ready meals, not realising how bad it is for our health. Poor nutrition makes us sleepy, weary and lacking energy – our bodies run on fuel, which nachos with cheese cannot replace.

Here are some tips on how you can improve your overall health without emptying your pockets too much!

Hunt down offers

Going to supermarkets in the evening is the best way of buying extremely cheap products with a short expiry date. If you fear you won’t eat all of it in one night (which is not recommended), have a major cook off and save some portions for later. By using this ‘technique’ you can even get a few meals for just a fiver!

Freeze your food

We usually buy ‘easy’ food, when we are too tired to bother with cooking. On a Sunday evening simply throw your ingredients into a huge pot – this can be a veggie sauce, a rice dish or chilli con carne, and freeze it in one-portion containers. Saves you a bit of time while staying healthy.

Discover food markets

Once you know where the nearest food market is, grab your trolley and go take a look. Markets are great for buying fruit and veg in bulk – a huge bag of apples for a pound, not to mention from a local supplier and chemicals-free, doesn’t sound half bad, does it?

Make a weekly food plan

It makes shopping much easier, when you have all your necessities for the week written down and know exactly how much you need to spend on them. Whenever you go food shopping, stick to your list and you will have plenty of groceries for the week – no need for a cheeky Nando’s when your fridge is empty by Wednesday!

Free your cupboards from junk food

Student inner body clocks usually make them feel peckish around midnight – that is when we come downstairs and eat all the chocolate and digestives, stored in the cupboards for Christmas time. But when you don’t have them – you simply don’t eat them! You can snack on an apple or a banana and make yourself feel a lot better before going to bed.

Remember, you only have one body – take good care of it, being a student doesn’t exempt you from that.

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