Trying to eat right while avoiding the sweets

Finding ways to eat healthy on campus

More stories from Brian Sheridan


Photo by Brian Sheridan

Erbert and Gerbert’s may not always have the healthiest options for students.

I try to eat relatively healthy. However, eating healthy on campus can be tricky.

Sure, there are healthy, low-fat, vegan, whatever options, but they’re surrounded by a sea of greasy, sugary, deep-fried junk. Especially if you go to the Riverview Cafe at Hilltop Center where it’s an all-you-can-eat smorgasbord of devilish delights.

I could get a turkey sandwich for lunch, but then I notice there’s a whole pan of brownies, cookies, ice cream and some other concoction of sugar and love right behind me.

My willpower is never strong enough to pass on the all-you-can-eat butterscotch pudding in the caf. I’ve recently made a giant mixing bowl’s worth of butterscotch pudding to eat, but that’s another story.

There are days where I am in Davies Center and I just can’t find a decent healthy meal that isn’t a cup of cheese and grapes so I end up getting something like a large slushie and a pack of whoopie pies.

The point is I try to eat healthy. Try being the key word.

No one wants to gain the dreaded freshman 15. Fortunately, a 2012 study by an Ohio State University professor found students to only gain an average of around 2.5 to 3.5 pounds their first year.

Getting into a healthy routine now is still important, though. You have to start the routine early before your metabolism gives out and the sweets become less forgiving. Soon, your arteries will become a thick, delicious stream of butterscotch pudding.

It all starts with finding where the healthy options are on campus that won’t taste like tree bark.

According to Erbert & Gerbert’s nutrition information, the better options are ones with turkey and whole wheat bread, like a Boney Billy or a Girf. Halley’s comet, Vesuvius and Phoenix are also good choices.

Unfortunately, if you love their Pudders (peanut butter and jelly), it’s the most unhealthy option.

The Mongolian Grill in Davies is a bountiful harvest of vegetables and high quality protein options. I’m all about brown rice and chicken for a meal.

Sodexo’s Simply-to-Go carts in Davies and Haas Fine Arts Center have a bunch of delicious, healthy choices if you’re on the go, as the cart implies.

The caesar chicken salad, ham and cheese sandwich and fresh fruit and vegetable cups are all healthy options, according to Sodexo’s nutrition information. I would pass on the desserts, though.

Freshens’ smoothies at Hilltop aren’t a horrible option if you want something sweet.

Most of the smoothies are a great source of potassium and protein, they also contain your entire day’s worth of vitamin A, C, D and E. On top of that, they even have a low calorie option.

And since we’re talking treats, if you’re in the Hilltop cafeteria and want something sweet that won’t fill you with shame after eating, the soft-serve ice cream machine is low-fat and cholesterol-free.

It can be tough to not pick the options covered in oils and sauces, or the sweets filled with chocolate, covered in chocolate and then sprinkled with more chocolate. Being healthy isn’t easy, but it’s not impossible here on campus.

Resist temptation. Stay strong. Live life without pudding-filled arteries.