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Freshman Fifteen Effect: Ways to Fight with It

When a problem gets a special name, you know that matters have turned serious. Many college students suffer from gaining weight during the first semester of their college lives. It is no surprise: it is hard to imagine a period in a person’s life that requires so much mental and emotional preparation as leaving your nest and settling in another city to start your student’s life. What are the reasons of this effect known as the “freshman fifteen” and what are the ways to fight it?

Emotional Reasons

Perhaps the most understandable reason is homesickness. A homemade meal prepared with love by your mother is no longer a common occurrence. Missing your cat at home, getting emotional over a phone call from your sister, missing your hometown can all be powerful enough to start the process of emotional eating: food is known to boost your mood when you are feeling low. When you feel like devouring a bar of chocolate, try to write instead. Write a page in your diary about how you feel, and let your feelings out. Go for a long walk around the campus or take your time in the shower. It will release the stress without the need to put on weight.

missing home

Stress Reasons

University is a whole new advancement comparing to high school, and the amount of work to be done is twice as hard, too. Assignments pile up by the second; professors are demanding to see only the best in you while your classmates try to outshine each other with their knowledge. All this can lead to stress and anxiety. Finding comfort in food may be a rapid solution, but a better way to deal with things would be to control yourself. Go to the gym and beat the punch bag, imagining your assignments instead of it. Complain to a friend in another college, they might know exactly how you feel if they are starting their college life too.


Sometimes the reason for those fifteen pounds on your hips may just be the lack of time to prepare a decent meal. Restaurants are too expensive, while the university cafeteria is just too awful. Cooking at home may just be too time-consuming. Fast food or delivery sound like great options to stave off your hunger and keep your wallet full, but they are not recommended for a long-term engagement, because they can lead not only to weight problems, but to other health problems too, such as diabetes, cavities, low immune system. You might munch on a burger and have a soda from time to time, but do not make a habit out of it.

New Environment

The new students don’t want to feel left out, and start to visit social gatherings. Of course, parties are great to meet new people and make your college life enjoyable and memorable. If you decide to blend in and start to party, remember that alcohol also is a huge factor of weight gaining. Try to drink less, and enjoy your conversations more. Not only you will remember them better, you are guaranteed to remain slim for longer!

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