One of the breakfast club meal options at Hillside Cafe includes a made-to-order omelet, a large blueberry muffin and a smoothie. The total caloric count of that particular breakfast tops 1,000 Calories – a little less than half the daily recommended Calorie intake – 2,000 Calories for the average young adult or 2,500 Calories for active young adults. With such food options available and a seemingly unlimited meal plan, weight gain seems inevitable.”The freshman 15″ refers to the average weight gain of 15 pounds mysteriously dispersed throughout a student’s first semester or year in college. Whatever your year, college weight gain is a pressing issue. The mystery of “the freshman 15” is actually not that inexplicable. As with all weight gain and loss, “the freshman 15” is a matter of the difference between Calories consumed and Calories used.Consuming 3,500 more Calories than needed by your body equals one pound of fat. Research done on 60 freshmen at Cornell University in 2002 resulted in an observation of an average of 174 extra Calories consumed than burned during the course of one day. Do the math, and you’ll see that some students gained up to a pound or two per week.Those numbers can add up pretty fast, but don’t blame ARAMARK for buying the next size up at Abercrombie and Fitch. Contrary to popular belief, it is possible to eat healthy on a meal plan. Douglass Food Court and Danforth Dining Center both offer salad bars where you can build your own salad. It would be advisable to top it off with salmon, tuna or chicken breast purchased yourself – all good sources of lean protein that cannot be found at all dining locations. Don’t cut out all your carbohydrates – absence of the right carbs has been shown to affect brain function. Instead of picking up a chocolate chunk muffin at the Common Ground, choose something with a good balance of protein and carbohydrates with a small amount of sugar to wake your body up – or “break the fast.” Avoid falling into what my freshman roommate and I dubbed the “Sal’s Trap” – ordering pizza in the late, late hours of the evening and finishing it before it gets cold. A more sensible late night snack is a handful of nuts or wheat pretzels. Whatever snack you choose, try to keep it under 200 Calories. Eating right is all about choices – drop your daily Venti Mocha Frappuccino habit in favor of a tall mocha latte and you’ll cut 380 Calories a day, or just under a pound a week. Another good choice is to include exercise to your normal routine. If you find you don’t have time to exercise, evaluate your schedule and pencil in workout sessions just like you would a class or lab. Exercise is cumulative – walk to class in three feet of snow instead of catching the bus, take the stairs to the third floor instead of the elevator or go for an evening walk along the Genesee with your significant other.”The freshman 15″ can be avoided – you just have to pay attention to your changing habits and lifestyle.

Graduate Student Collective voices financial grievances in town hall

On Tuesday Feb. 21, over 50 graduate students from across the University filled the Humanities Center for a town hall…

A Shrekcellent way to deal with stress

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Love languages: is it science?

There is science behind oxytocin — the “love hormone” — but love is so multidimensional that it’s hard to settle on one universal meaning for all.